How to complete an application to import biological materials

​The application to import biological material consists of the following sections:

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Importer details

Enter the name, street address, telephone number, facsimile number and email address of the person or organisation importing the goods into Australia. In the space provided, enter the contact person's name for this consignment. This name will be included on the Import Permit.

Include the name/s of any other third party who may contact the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources (the department) on the importer’s behalf.

Lodging online

If you are lodging your application online, you must provide an email address.

Broker/agent details

Provide broker/agent details including name, address and telephone number.

Exporter details

The exporter is the individual or organisation who is sending the good to Australia. Provide the exporter's street address, telephone number, facsimile number and email address (if applicable).

Where guidelines allow sourcing of the same good from more than one supplier in the country of origin, you may nominate 'various' as the exporter. In these cases, address details are not required for each supplier.

Product/goods details

You must provide a thorough description of the product you are intending to import, including identification to both genus and species level wherever possible. The product name on the application form should correspond with the product name on the packaging, invoices and packing slips.

If the product contains several ingredients, you should include a percentage ingredient list. For some goods, the unit size of the product is relevant and you should include these details where possible under 'package details'. If insufficient space has been provided to supply this information, please attach details. Use the following examples as a guide.
Common name/Product typeScientific name (Genus, species) or brand nameDescription (including species of origin, country/ies of origin, strain/variety, cooked/fresh/frozen)Package details (total size and size per unit)Proposed end use
FertiliserNot applicable100% sundried kelp
(New Zealand origin)
50 x 100 kg packageFertiliser
Egg noodles (brand name)Not applicableFlour with 20% egg content, cookedAny size package in consignmentHuman consumption
ServistrepStreptomycin sulphateFermented antibioticUnlimited

Proposed end use of material

The end use of the product imported into Australia may contribute to biosecurity risk. It is the importer’s responsibility to inform the department of the proposed end use of the product by selecting one of the categories on the form or from the list below:

  • In vivo (for use with or exposure to animals, plants, humans or the environment e.g. bioremediation agents). Please specify target species where applicable.
  • In vitro (include samples for analysis, not for use with or exposure to animals, plants or humans).
  • Fertilisers (manufactured or to be manufactured for use as fertiliser or soil conditioners).
  • Human consumption (only for consumption by humans).
  • Pet food for aquarium fish (to be fed to aquatic species only).
  • Pet food (to be fed to domestic animals only, other than aquatic species).
  • Bait.
  • Stock feed (agricultural feed only).
  • Aquaculture (fish farming).
  • Therapeutic (to be administered to humans or animals).
  • Processing (product requires further processing or is intended for processing).
  • Other (please specify).

Country of origin

Provide the name of the country that the product will be exported from.

Country of export

Please provide the name of the country from which the product you are intending to import is being exported.

Other details

Genetically modified status

Indicate if the product you are intending to import has been genetically manipulated or contains any genetically manipulated material. If so, please attach specific details.

Details of approved arrangements

If you have access to an approved arrangement site, please provide details of the location address . Importation of some products will only be permitted for use at an approved arrangements site and registration must be current at the time of import. If you intend to use more than one approved arrangements site for the imported good, provide a summary of sitespremises to be used including the site registration number. The approved arrangements site must have specific approval to hold the particular species or good being imported.

Note: an import permit may only be used by (or on behalf of) the person or entity named as the importer and must be valid at the time the goods enter Australia.

Refer to the Minimum document requirements policy for information on minimum requirements that must be met by documents presented to the department to support risk assessment of imported cargo, whether for biosecurity or imported food purposes.

Approved import permit

Indicate your preferred mode of delivery. You must accept the terms and conditions to receive the permit via email.

Manufacturing details

Please indicate if you intend to submit additional information regarding ingredients and preparation (e.g. questionnaires, manufacturer's declarations, process flow charts).

Please provide the manufacturer's details including

  • name
  • address
  • phone and fax numbers

Importer declaration

The importer declaration outlines the legal obligation of the individual that is applying for the Import Permit and must be completed by all applicants. Please read carefully before signing the declaration.

Submitting your permit application

Complete and submit application form online (BICON)

The application to import biological materials can be submitted and paid for electronically, within our secure environment.

To help you comply with your biosecurity obligations, the department has established a team to answer your questions about import conditions and permits. You can contact the team by:

  • Phone: 1800 900 090 or + 61 3 8318 6700 (from outside Australia)
  • Email: Imports

Animal and Biological Import Assessments Branch (ABIAB) endeavours to finalise import permit application assessments within 20 working days. The time required to assess an import permit application however depends on ABIAB receiving all relevant information, documents and fees with each application.

If ABIAB needs to request further information from the applicant, or if policy advice is required, the assessment may take longer. Please note that in accordance with the Quarantine Service Fees Determination 2005 (Schedule 1, Part 1, Division 2) additional assessment fees for each quarter hour, or part of a quarter hour may also be incurred.

Please note: The department will only take receipt of, or release, information about an import permit application from authorised persons (which includes all individuals identified in the permit application). The import permit holder or a senior representative of the importing company may submit written approval to the department to authorise additional persons to act on the importer’s behalf.