Skip to Content


Alerts provide information about significant changes to import conditions. Keep informed of alerts by following individual import cases.

Register for khapra beetle treatment measures for sea containers (March 2021)

Effective from 19 March 2021

On 5 March 2021, we issued a BICON alert providing further detail on the new measures for sea containers to address the hitchhiking risk of khapra beetle. Under these new measures, target risk sea containers will need to be treated offshore. To assist you in meeting these new measures, we will be running information sessions on each of the approved treatment options.

Who does this notice affect?
Stakeholders in the import and shipping industries including: Vessel masters, freight forwarders, treatment providers, Biosecurity Industry Participants, importers, customs brokers, principal shipping agents and any other operators in the sea container supply and logistics chain.

Information sessions:
To assist treatment providers in meeting the new khapra beetle requirements for the offshore treatment of target risk sea containers, we are running information sessions to provide more details on the different forms of treatments and how these changes will affect treatment providers. Please note that each session will cover a different form of treatment.

The information sessions are:

  • Methyl bromide fumigation: 15:00 – 17:00 (AEDT), Friday 26 March 2021
  • Heat treatment: 15:00 – 17:00 (AEDT), Monday 29 March 2021
  • Insecticide treatment: 15:00 – 17:00 (AEDT), Wednesday 31 March 2021

The information sessions will cover:

  • Khapra beetle treatment measures for sea containers.
  • How our existing offshore treatment assurance schemes (the Australian Fumigation Accreditation Scheme and the Offshore Brown Marmorated Stinkbug Treatment Providers Scheme) will be used.
  • How the requirements of our treatment methodologies apply to the treatment of sea containers.

These sessions will also provide an opportunity for treatment providers to ask questions and seek technical advice from us.

Register to attend:

Why are these changes needed?
The actions are considered necessary because:

  • The global spread of khapra beetle is increasing. Australia has seen an increase in detections of khapra beetle during 2020 in commodities that khapra beetle previously had no association with, from countries not known to have khapra beetle, and as contaminants in shipping containers.
  • Khapra beetle is a significant threat to Australian plant industries, including the grain export industry. Khapra beetle destroys grain quality making it unfit for human or animal consumption. Stored products also become contaminated with beetles, cast skins and hairs from larvae, which can be a human health risk.
  • If khapra beetle enters Australia it would have significant economic consequences. An outbreak could cost Australia $15.5 billion over 20 years through revenue losses arising from damaged grain in storage and exports.

Australia currently has biosecurity requirements for many products that could be infested with khapra beetle. However, considering the emerging khapra risk associated with imported shipping containers, the department believes that the biosecurity requirements need to be expanded and strengthened to prevent a khapra beetle incursion.

For more information on the urgent actions visit:

Enquiries can be directed to 1800 900 090 or via email at (please title the subject line of the email with ‘Plant Tier 2 – Khapra urgent actions’).

This Alert applies to the following Cases:

Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment | © Commonwealth of Australia | Accessibility | Privacy | Conditions of Use | Department Feedback |