05-2020 - Adjusting goods and/or packaging prior to onshore BMSB treatment

20 January 2020

Who does this notice affect?

Clients in the import and shipping industries—including treatment providers, freight forwarders, importers and customs brokers—associated with importing goods that require Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) treatment during the BMSB risk season (goods shipped between 1 September 2019 that arrive in Australian territory by 31 May 2020 inclusive).

What has changed?

Current process

The department has published further information on the Preparing to import goods during the 2019-20 BMSB season webpage about the current process that must be followed when:

  • an onshore department approved treatment provider has assessed the suitability of a consignment for BMSB treatment


  • determined that remedial action (e.g. adjusting shipping packaging) is required to make the consignment suitable for treatment


  • the remedial action can be performed within the container, without removing any contents (including packaging) from the container.

In particular, the department requires treatment providers to obtain approval from the department prior to the remedial action being undertaken.

Future changes

In response to industry feedback on the above approval process, the department is developing Approved Arrangement (AA) conditions to standardise and streamline the process. These updates will effectively remove the requirement to contact the department and obtain prior approval to undertaking remedial action on a per-consignment basis.

The condition updates will not change the way treatment providers undertake consignment suitability assessments.  

Importantly, the current requirement to obtain departmental approval to undertake remedial action on a per-consignment basis will continue to apply until the new Approved Arrangement conditions are finalised, communicated and implemented.

Further information

For further information regarding the current process, please contact SPP@agriculture.gov.au.

Last reviewed: 20 January 2020
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