Container fumigation is essential to ensure companies can safely import and export goods while complying with relevant laws and regulations.

Following the coronavirus pandemic, global trade has resumed and continues to grow, which has meant the need for quick and effective fumigation treatments has become increasingly important.

In this article, we’ll explain what container fumigation includes, its importance, and why choosing a reputable provider is crucial for businesses in the UK involved in importing and exporting goods around the globe.

What is container fumigation?

Container fumigation is a specialised process that involves a licenced team using fumigants to eliminate unwanted species and other harmful organisms within shipping containers.

Every year, a quarter of a billion shipping containers are transported around the world, moving goods across international borders, and some will carry species that pose a risk in the destination country.

By not treating these pests, the environment, agricultural industry, and public health are all threatened.

For that reason, fumigation is used as a preventative measure to ensure every container is free from harmful species before it leaves the port.

During fumigation, the shipping container is isolated and sealed before introducing a controlled amount of fumigant. The gas penetrates the cargo, targeting and eliminating unwanted species with a respiratory system.

This process is essential not only to protect those living in the destination country, but also to safeguard the shipped goods and preserve their quality.

Why is it important to fumigate containers?

The need for fumigation derives from the potential risks associated with shipping goods between countries.

Pests and other invasive species can hide in containers, posing a serious threat to the agricultural industries and

ecosystems of countries around the world.

Fumigation is a necessary first line of defence that stops invasive species from being introduced into foreign countries. Over the years, many countries have seen first-hand the devastation non-native species can cause crops, native plants, and public health.

These essential treatments ensure that all imported goods meet the stringent biosecurity regulations that most countries’ governments have now implemented.

Containers failing to comply with these regulations will be rejected at the destination country, resulting in not only a financial loss but damage to your company’s reputation.

In most cases, fumigation is not only a legal requirement but also essential to ensuring the global supply chain operates efficiently.

Which countries require fumigation for imported containers?

Every country has different requirements for container fumigation depending on their biosecurity regulations.

The majority of nations, particularly those with strict agricultural protection measures like Australia and New

Zealand, state that imported goods must undergo fumigation to avoid transporting unwanted pests.

Currently, the list of countries that require a fumigation certificate when importing goods are:

  • United Kingdom
  • EU member states
  • United States
  • Canada
  • Australia
  • New Zealand
  • Mexico
  • South Africa
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • The Philippines
  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • Turkey

Each listed country above will have a comprehensive list of regulated pest species, and failure to comply with fumigation regulations can result in the shipment being rejected, quarantined, or even destroyed on arrival.

Any business involved in the international trade of goods should always be well-informed about the latest fumigation regulations for each country to ensure a smooth import process.

Why is Urban Hawks the best choice for container fumigation?

We are proud to be a favoured choice for container fumigation services and treatments for UK businesses exporting cargo globally.

Not only are we an approved fumigation provider in the UK as a member of the British Pest Control Association (BPCA), but we are also an approved quarantine service provider in Australia and New Zealand for treating Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs (BMSB) and imported goods.

We are committed to maintaining high standards and adherence to international biosecurity regulations to ensure our client’s shipments are ready to go as soon as possible while reducing the risk of rejected shipments and regulatory penalties.

With more than 25 years’ experience, our highly skilled team is trained to handle various fumigants and is always equipped with the latest technology and equipment. We guarantee a quick and effective fumigation service to minimise business downtime and ensure the safety and integrity of goods.

We offer a range of fumigation services tailored to the individual needs of each client, from container fumigation to warehouses and storage silos, we are proud to provide comprehensive solutions to ensure pest free imports.

By choosing Urban Hawks as your trusted fumigation partner, we will ensure not only compliance but also mitigate risks and contribute to your reputation within the global trade network.

Find out more about container fumigation

We provide our container fumigation services and treatments for clients exporting cargo globally throughout the UK.

Container fumigation is vital to the international trade process to prevent the transportation of non-native species and safeguard the global supply chain from harmful microorganisms.

If you are in need of a fumigation certificate for your shipments or have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Call us today on 0151 345 6854 or send an email to

We are happy to answer any further queries and offer a free consultancy process to discuss the pest issues thoroughly before actioning a procedure.