The growth of the bioeconomy, and in particular the debate regarding the use of biofuels, highlights how innovation in agriculture driven by new policy initiatives, with the best of intentions (e.g. reducing carbon emissions and reliance on fossil fuels), may have unintended consequences. These unintended consequences include a variety of socioeconomic and environmental impacts that arise because of a decoupling of agricultural/industrial growth or innovation from consideration of environmental and social impacts. This issue is not new and has long existed in relation to the use of alien plants for production or ornamental purposes-hence our use of the term 'bio-insecurities'. We discuss the role and refinements needed in existing weed risk management systems and existing policies to achieve a more sustainable and defensible approach to the use of alien plants in the bioeconomy.