Container Fumigation

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Container Fumigation

Container fumigation is the treatment of a commodity within a shipping container or the container itself to eliminate the risk of pests or disease from entering or leaving the country or state.

Transportation containers have become one of the more popular options for the importing and exporting of goods requiring certification, bulk commodities, wood, logs, or wooden items (dunnage, pallets), or loose furniture pieces, which makes fumigation a convenient method of treatment.

Where required we can offer inspection services and treatment for Brown Marmorated Stink Bug and other quarantine high risk pests.

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug (BMSB) Treatment

Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs are voracious feeders that in large numbers can seriously damage important agricultural fruit and vegetable crops. The Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) has brought in seasonal legislation measures that require “all target high risk break bulk cargo, to be treated offshore and importers must ensure that seasonal BMSB import conditions are complied with before importing goods shipped as sea cargo from target risk countries. If untreated the sea cargo will be prevented from discharge/unloading.”

Rentokil’s fumigation service is an effective and officially recognised treatment under AQIS (Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service) for pre-shipment fumigation of break bulk cargo. AQIS rules state that where pre-shipment is required, it must be completed by an AQIS accredited treatment provider.

Container Fumigation Solutions

Rentokil’s qualified and competent staff will choose the correct fumigant treatment depending on the contents of your containerised cargo.

In order to mitigate any risk, we comply with local government regulations and legislation, the fumigant manufacturer’s product label and MSDS, and our own global and local operating procedures and safe working practices. We also carry out a full risk assessment before any work commences. Our branches are audited regularly to ensure they have the correct equipment and tools required for each task and all equipment is calibrated at required intervals. Regular assessments are carried out with our technicians so that they are always informed of the latest regulations, innovation and pest trends.

The safety of our teams and that of our customers are our number one priority at Rentokil, and our monitoring equipment is calibrated regularly to ensure accurate readings and gas measurements throughout a fumigation treatment.

Gas measuring and monitoring equipment used throughout the treatment guarantees the  correct amount of fumigant gas is inserted into the area, and the gas lines will advise the readings to ensure the efficacy of the treatment. Specialised gas leakage detection tools are used to identify any gas leakages, so that remedial actions can be taken. Our technicians wear personal protective breathing and safety equipment throughout a fumigation treatment, keeping them safe.

After any fumigation work has been carried out, full aeration is required to expel the fumigant and only once these readings are deemed to be at the acceptable level, will the container be allowed to be transported to its destination.

We do not offer Fumigation in transit. This service is deemed illegal, and is discouraged by SAPCA.

Authorised fumigants and treatments for container fumigation:

Methyl Bromide:

  • The fumigant Methyl Bromide is being phased out globally due to its damaging effect on the ozone layer. As a responsible fumigation service provider we have introduced Profume as a registered alternative in all regions.
  • Methyl Bromide will still be used where required for QIS and ISPM15 export purposes
  • Rentokil does not provide fumigation-in-transit services as this practice is prohibited in terms of the label as well as SANS 10204: 2006 Art. 20.6.5 and the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization International). Therefore no container may be fumigated in transit with Methyl Bromide.
  • Quick turnaround time: 24 to 48 hours on average (under ideal conditions)


  • Fumigation using Phosphine is an accepted treatment for most bulk food products including cereal, grains, dried fruit, nuts, rice, cocoa, coffee beans and tobacco.
  • It eliminates all life cycle stages of the target insect pest.
  • It has the advantages of being non-tainting and leaving no pesticide residue, as well as being a cost effective alternative to Methyl Bromide.
  • Turnaround time: 5 to 7 days (Silos 10 to 14 days) on average (under ideal conditions)

ProFume (Sulfuryl Fluoride/SF)

  • The active ingredient - Sulfuryl Fluoride - is effective in eliminating wood-boring insect and Stored Product Insects (SPIs) such as beetles, weevils, mites and moths in food processing facilities, cereal grain mills, grain stores, food or feed storage warehouses, as well as infested process machinery. 
  • It is also effective in buildings where it works exceptionally well against infestations within the fabric or structure of buildings.
  • Turnaround time: 24 hours (dependent on the product being treated, and under ideal conditions)

Entotherm Heat Treatment:

  • A chemical-free treatment using dry transferable heat in a contained area.
  • Our unique heat pod is portable and suited for a wide range of customers like food processing facilities, care homes, hospitals, hotels, and guest houses as well as residential properties.
  • A quick and effective treatment for moulds and pathogens, and all types of pest insects such as bed bugs, cockroaches and wood boring pests, killing all stages of an insect’s life cycle from egg to adult.
  • Entotherm is also an ISPM15 certified treatment.


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