Types of timber, bamboo and related products

​​The information below will assist in classifying different types of timber, bamboo and related products, and will direct you to the appropriate import conditions in the Biosecurity Import Conditions (BICON) system. Importers of composite products will need to meet the import conditions for all components.

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Artificial plants on natural stems

Image of imitation plant 

Common names

 Artificial plants, artificial trees, faux plants

Import conditions

BICON case: Artificial plants on natural stems

Description/uses

Artificial foliage or flowers attached to a natural wood stem. The stem may be with or without bark.

Biosecurity risks

The bark on the natural stems can carry insects and/or plant diseases. Natural stems may also be from prohibited plant species like apple or elm trees. In some cases, seeds (including wheat) and pine cones are attached to the stems for decoration.

​Balsawood

Image of balsawood 

Common name

Corkwood

Scientific name

Ochroma pyramidale

Import conditions

BICON case: Balsawood

Description/uses

Balsawood is the finished product derived after kiln drying and milling wood from stems of Ochroma pyramidale. It is commonly used for insulation, life-rafts and model making.

Biosecurity risks

Balsawood is a light, processed wood. Balsawood has lower biosecurity risks than other wooden products because its width is usually too thin for borer attacks. 

Bamboo products

Image of bamboo chimes 
Image of Bamboo laminates & bamboo veneered articles

Common names

Dried bamboo, bamboo laminates, bamboo veneers

Scientific names

Bambusa spp., Dendrocalamus spp., Phyllostchys spp. and related genera

Import conditions

BICON case: Bamboo products

Description/uses

Dried bamboo articles include bamboo fencing, poles, handicrafts, sticks, chimes, chopsticks, baskets, skewers, and other articles that are wholly or partly made of bamboo that has been dried.

Bamboo laminates include highly processed products manufactured from bamboo that have undergone manufacturing processes including shredding or stripping of the bamboo, boiling or steaming, peeling/veneering, kiln drying, followed by moulding/pressing. These can include bamboo flooring, strand woven bamboo board and bamboo kitchenware.

Biosecurity risks

Bamboo articles, if not processed sufficiently may contain boring insects, fungi, and other contaminants that have the potential to introduce exotic pests and diseases to Australia.

Cane and rattan articles

Image of Cane & rattan articles 

Common names

Cane and rattan products, cane and rattan furniture

Scientific name

Calamus spp. and related genera

Import conditions

BICON case: Cane and rattan articles

Description/uses

Cane and rattan products include cricket bat handles, furniture, kitchenware and mats, as well as bundles of prepared rattan.

If cane or rattan articles contain any bamboo it must be imported as a bamboo product and meet the conditions as stated in the BICON case Bamboo products.

Biosecurity Risks

These products are often manufactured in rural-based cottage industries where there can be a lack of rigorous quality control mechanisms to address biosecurity concerns. Insects can be found in the stems. Bark has a risk of carrying disease and spores. 

Chestnut bark hoops

Image of Chestnut bark hoops 

Common names

Chestnut hoops, chestnut rings

Scientific name

Castanea spp.

Import Conditions

BICON case: Oak barrels and chestnut bark hoops

Description/uses

Chestnut hoops are decorative wooden hoops on wine barrels. Wine producers wrap the hoops around oak barrels to minimise physical damage, as a support or as decoration.

Biosecurity risks

Chestnut Blight is a serious disease of chestnuts and presents a significant biosecurity concern. The disease has devastated chestnut forests in North America and Europe.

Cork and cork products

Image of a cork 

Common names

Cork, granulated cork, processed cork

Scientific name

Quercus suber

Import conditions​

BICON case: Cork and cork products

Description/uses

Highly processed products made from the outer bark of the cork oak.

Biosecurity risks

There are minimal biosecurity risks with the commodity itself. There is the potential for larger cork products to become infested with insect pests.

Dried willow and wicker articles

Image of wicker basket 

Common names

Wicker furniture, wicker baskets

Scientific name

Salix spp.

Import conditions

BICON case: Dried willow and wicker articles

Description/uses

Includes baskets, fencing, furniture and mats. Articles that also include other material such as wood, rattan, cane or bamboo will need to comply with the conditions for these commodities. Willow is referred to as having the bark still in place, whereas wicker is referred to as slender willow branches without bark.

For sawn Salix timber, please refer to the BICON case Timber and timber mouldings.

Biosecurity risks

As willow contains bark it presents the risk of carrying disease spores and the bark may mask the presence of insects feeding in the cambial layer.

Fencing and screening material derived from plants

Image of Cunninghamia lanceolata – bark fencing
Image of Kochia scoparia – fencing and screening
Image of fern fencing

Common names

Thatching, fencing, screening, bark fencing, brushwood fencing, china fir, fireweed, burning bush, summer cypress, weeping baeckea, weeping coast myrtle, heather, ling

Scientific name

This includes a number of different products derived from different species:

  • Fencing and screening made from branches, including bark: Cunninghamia lanceolata (syn. Belis lanceolata and Pinus lanceolata), Calluna vulgaris
  • : Bassia scoparia (syn. Kochia scoparia)
  • Fencing and screening made from shrubs: Baeckea frutescens (Myrtaceae family)
  • Fencing and screening made from ferns: Coniogramme spp., Dicranopteris spp., Gleichenia spp., Pteridium spp., Pteris spp.

Import conditions

BICON case: Fencing and screening material derived from plants

Description/uses

Parts of shrubs, trees, branches, and bark used to make fencing and screening.

Biosecurity risks

Consignments of dried plant material can contain bark and viable seeds that may be prohibited, restricted or diseased. Dried plant material may also be infested with insects, contaminated with soil or carry fungal spores of biosecurity concern to Australia.

Importation of Myrtaceous timber into Australia poses a risk of introducing exotic pests and diseases, including guava rust or eucalyptus rust.

 

 

 

 

 

Grape vine articles

Image of grapevine woven articles 

Common name

Grape vine products and decorations

Scientific name

Vitis spp.

Import conditions

BICON case: Grape vine articles

Description/uses

Articles made from the vines of Vitis spp. include Christmas decorations, baskets and other ornaments.

Biosecurity risks

Grape vine may carry exotic plant diseases or insects, and the vine may be propagatable, which increases the risk of entry, spread and establishment of biosecurity risks.

 

 

Laminated timber products and articles (including plywood and LVL)

Image of laminated veneer lumber 
Image of plywood table
Image of plywood veneer sheeting

Common names

Plywood, ply products, ply sheeting, LVL

Import conditions

BICON case: Plywood, veneer sheets and articles

Description/uses

Articles made solely from plywood and/or veneer or a combination of plywood, veneer and reconstituted wood.

Plywood sheets are typically made from veneers no more than 5mm thick; complete sheets are usually no more than 35mm thick (i.e. 6-7 veneers bonded together). Includes I-beams, I-joists and flat-pack modular homes. Laminated veneer lumber (LVL) is an assembly of thin timber veneers laminated with adhesive, in which the grain direction of the outer veneers and most of the other veneers is in the longitudinal direction. LVL is often fabricated as beams.

If the product contains any solid wood components it must be imported as a wooden manufactured article and meet the conditions as stated in the BICON case Wooden manufactured articles.

Biosecurity risks

Plywood and LVL is a processed wood product that attracts timber pests when stored in an environment that favours them. Plywood and substrates used for veneers have the capacity to absorb moisture and this may encourage infestation by pests.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Logs, log cabins and oversize timber

Image of Logs and oversize timber for processing
Image of timber carving

Common name

Logs, poles, raw lumber

Import Conditions

BICON case: Logs, log cabins and oversize timber

Description/uses

Logs, log cabins and oversize timber refers to any timber that exceeds 200mm in all dimensions (length, width, depth and all diagonals) which may require further processing or may already be processed into products such as log cabins, statues, totem poles  and oversize furniture.

For timber that does not exceed 200mm in all dimensions, and for Myrtaceae timber of all sizes, please refer to the BICON case Timber and timber mouldings.

Timber exceeding 200 mm of the genus Cocos nucifera is prohibited entry into Australia.

Biosecurity risks

Minimal processing increases the risk of infestation with insects and snails, contamination with soil, bark, seeds, plant material and animal residues.

 

 

 

 

Oak barrels

Image of oak barrel 

Common names

Wine barrels, casks, barrels, staves, tanks and vats made from oak

Scientific name

Quercus spp.

Import conditions

BICON case: Oak barrels and chestnut bark hoops

Description/uses

Oak barrels are used in alcohol production.

For the importation of barrels for use as home wares including garden ornaments, please refer to the BICON case Wooden manufactured articles.

Biosecurity risks

Wine barrels can become infested with insect pests such as borers. The manufacturing processes combined with the end use of alcohol production make oak barrels a low risk commodity.

Packing materials and packaging of plants

Image of packing material 

Common name

Packaging

Import conditions

BICON case: Packing materials and packaging of plants

Description/uses

Material used as packaging around nursery stock. Materials used to pack the goods may include buckwheat hulls, cardboard, charcoal, paper, cork, peat moss and sawdust amongst others.

For timber packaging that is imported as a commodity (is not being used to support goods in international trade), please refer to the BICON case Timber and bamboo packaging.

For packaging for general use that is imported as a non-commodity (supporting goods in international trade), please refer to the BICON case Non-commodity cargo clearance.

Biosecurity risks

Packaging materials such as straw, hay and wood shavings can present a very serious biosecurity risk. These materials may contain insects, soil, viable weed and cereal seeds, plant and animal diseases and other contaminants.

Pine cones

Image of pine cone 

Common name

Conifer pine cones

Scientific name

Pinus spp.

Import Conditions

BICON case: Pine cones

Description/uses

The conical or rounded woody fruit of a pine ​tree, with scales that open to release the seeds. Pine cones are mainly used in Christmas decorations and floral displays.

Biosecurity risks

There is the risk of pine cones introducing animal diseases, plant diseases, insect pests and viable prohibited and restricted plant seeds.

 

 

Plant derived charcoal, wood pellets and briquettes

Image of Charcoal of plant origin 
Image of piles of wooden pellets

Common names

Charcoal, coal, wood pellets, fuel wood

Import conditions

BICON case:Plant derived charcoal, wood pellets and briquettes

Description/uses

Charcoal includes timber or other plant residues that have been fully carbonised at high temperatures under low oxygen conditions. Fully carbonised charcoal includes carbonised briquettes and pellets made from compressed wood, charcoal, lump wood charcoal (which is fully carbonised timber, coconut shell, bamboo or any plant derived origin), extruded charcoal and heat beads.

Wood pellets and briquettes are products whereby sawdust, wood powder or charcoal has been extruded, pressed and pelletised into pellets, agglomerated logs or briquettes.

Biosecurity risks

Charcoal that is not fully carbonised may contain bark and other biosecurity risk material such as insects of concern. Wood or agricultural waste that has undergone carbonisation or high level processing (heating, pressing or pelletising under pressure) poses minimal biosecurity risk.

Plant materials embedded in a solid medium

Image of surf board with fins 

Common name

Plant materials embedded in plastic or resin

Import conditions

BICON case: Plant materials embedded in a solid medium

Description/uses

Includes timber and bamboo articles that have been fully embedded in plastic or a similar material.

Biosecurity risks

Plant materials, including timber and bamboo fully embedded in hard silicone, glass, fibreglass, catalysed hard plastics or similar compounds using heat, moulding or chemical processes pose a low biosecurity risk due to their manufacturing processes.

 

 

Reconstituted wood

Image of reconstituted wood sheet 
Image of plastic wood

Common names

Plastic wood. Chipboard, particle board, fibreboard, medium density fibreboard (MDF), high density fibreboard (HDF), oriented strand board (OSB), chipboard, particleboard, laminated strand lumber (LSL)

Import conditions

BICON case: Reconstituted wood products

Description/uses

Products made with wood fibre, plant flour or wood granules (pallwood), containing a minimum of 30 per cent resin, polyethylene, polystyrene, polyvinyl chloride or similar. They have no recognisable signs of the raw plant materials used in their manufacture, and have blending, thermal mixing and extrusion steps incorporated into their manufacturing process.

Products made from a combination of reconstituted wood and wood veneer where the veneer is no more than 5mm thick. Includes chipboard, hardboard, medium and high density fibre board (MDF), oriented strand board (OSB), particle board and masonite.

Biosecurity risks

Due to the manufacturing processes these products pose minimal biosecurity risks.

 

 

Sawdust or woodchips (including wood flour)

Image of woodchips 
Image of piles of wood flour

Common names

Sawdust, woodchips, wood cellulose, wood flour, wood shavings, wood fibre, wood wool

Import conditions

BICON case: Sawdust and woodchips

Description/uses

Includes sawdust, wood fibre, shavings, chunks, and chips, wood flour and powder, items containing sawdust such as animal beddings, door snakes or stuffed toys, pieces of wood used in wine making (excluding staves, headboards and barrels), pieces of wood used in aquariums and terrariums, and any other timber by-products.

For the importation of products which have been processed into wood pellets, briquettes or charcoal, please refer to the BICON case Plant derived charcoal, wood pellets and briquettes.

Biosecurity risks

High biosecurity risks are associated with sawdust products such as soil, other plant materials, animal residues or insect concerns that have been mixed or packed with the commodity. Wood chips, chunks or bits constitute the highest risk because they have undergone minimal processing.

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Timber and bamboo packaging

Image of a pallet

Image of Bamboo pallet

Image of Bamboo pallet

Common names

Pallets, crates

Import Conditions

BICON case: Timber and bamboo packaging

Additional information: Timber and bamboo packaging and dunnage webpage

Description/uses

Refers to timber packaging and dunnage imported as a commodity. Includes cases, crates, pallets, packaging made from plywood and veneer, bearers and blocks.

For packaging for general use that is imported as a non-commodity (supporting goods in international trade), please refer to the BICON case Non-commodity cargo clearance.

This does not include decorative boxes that remain with a commodity when sold.

Biosecurity risks

Timber and bamboo packaging and dunnage pose a high risk of introducing timber insects and plant pathogens into Australia. It is often made from lower quality timber that is not suitable for other commercial uses. Timber can have a high component of sapwood which is especially attractive to a wide range of timber pests.

 

 

Timber and timber mouldings

Image of rough sawn timber
Image of dressed timber
Image of glue laminated timber

Common name

Sawn timber, roundwood, glulam

Import conditions

BICON case: Timber and timber mouldings

Description/uses

Includes lumber that has been rough sawn into a desired size and does not exceed 200mm in each dimension, and timber that is machined into a desired shape and dressed (smooth surface) but is not finished (lacquered or painted), such as solid timber decking, flooring, glue laminated timber (glulam) and roof eaves.

For timber that exceeds 200mm in all dimensions (except Myrtaceae timber), please refer to the BICON case Logs, log cabins and oversize timber.

Biosecurity risks

Sawn timber, roundwood and timber mouldings can become contaminated with mould, fungi, insects and other timber pests through storage on construction and building sites, shipping containers and other environments. These products have the capacity to absorb moisture and this may encourage infestation by pests.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wisteria articles

Image of wisteria baskets 

Common names

Wisteria products, woven baskets

Scientific name

Wisteria spp.

Import conditions

BICON case: Wisteria articles

Description/uses

Articles that are wholly or partly made of Wisteria, including baskets that are covered by Wisteria binding and bundles of prepared Wisteria.

Biosecurity risks

These products are often manufactured in rural-based cottage industries where there can be a lack of rigorous quality control mechanisms to address biosecurity concerns. Insects can be found in the stems. Bark has a risk of carrying disease and spores.

Wooden manufactured articles

Image of timber stool 

Common names

Wooden products, furniture

Import conditions

BICON case: Wooden manufactured articles

Description/uses

Wooden articles are a finished product and are often lacquered, varnished or painted. Includes products that are new or antique, and are made from solid wood, or a combination of solid wood and plywood or veneer, plastic or metal. This also includes items made by hand from wood, such as art, instruments, pipes, arrows, bowls, weapon handles, shields and spears.

Biosecurity risks

Due to their manufacturing these products are considered low risk. However, they may still contain timber borers, insect pests, bark and other contaminants. 

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