ISPM directive 15 FAO (fumigation). International movement of goods on pallets

ISPM directive 15 FAO (fumigation). International movement of goods on pallets

Since wood is a potential vehicle for harmful organisms, on 5 May 2000 the European Community issued Directive 2000/29 in which it defined special requirements for the circulation of pallets between countries.

A preventive treatment has been made compulsory, defined as "fumigation", using chemical products based on methyl bromide, or alternatively the HT (heat treatment), consisting of a thermal treatment in which the wood is treated in special cells called dryers, the two systems are equivalent and both are recognised as valid for the purposes of the FAO ISPM 15 directive in order to eliminate parasites that can cause serious damage to forests.

This treatment is confirmed by marking the following pallet.

marchio fumigazione pallet
Unfortunately, the fumigation treatment involves high costs and for this reason or due to operational superficiality, non-fumigated pallets are still often used.



Below are indicated the main areas and world markets. For more details see the page IPPC/FAO - countries applying for the mark

The exchange of goods on pallets within the European Community (except from Portugal) does not require a fumigation certificate.

All wooden packaging of EU origin, be moved from Portugal to EU countries or third countries must be treated and marked according to ISPM No 15. Portugal cannot guarantee treatment according to ISPM No. 15 for all wood packaging passing through Portugal, so it is recommended to send treated and marked wood packaging for all shipments. Treatment and marking can only be avoided for packages with final destination Portugal.
NAPPO countries (United States, Canada and Mexico) reported the implementation of FAO's ISPM-15 as of 16 September 2005 and it came into force on 5 July 2006.

The United States has amended its Phytosanitary Regulations 7 CFR 319.40 (containing conditions to reduce the risk of spreading harmful organisms related to the import of timber and unmanufactured wood articles) to adopt the FAO International Standard ISPM-15.

The requirements for wood packaging destined for Canada are defined in document D-98-08 entitled (Entry Requirements for Wood Packaging Materials Produced in All Areas Other Than the United States).

Mexico had notified the WTO of the implementation of the FAO Standard ISPM-15 with effect from 27 November 2003 for exports and with an official document setting out the requirements to be met by raw wood packaging leaving Mexico, called PROY-NOM-144-SEMARNAT-2004.

For the UNITED STATES, CANADA and MEXICO, full implementation of the ban on wood packaging material is effective July 5, 2006. If the Port Director determines that it is not possible to separate the goods from the non-compliant packaging, all shipments containing infringing wood packaging material (WPM) will be ordered to be re-exported. IT (Immediate Transit) and T&E (Transportation and Export) shipments containing infringing WPM will not be allowed to transit.

All costs incurred for the services of the agricultural specialists and CBP officials who separated the cargo will be invoiced to the importer or other interested party. Wood packing material (WPM) and related merchandise will be exported at the expense of the importer or other interested party.

China has announced the implementation of FAO's ISPM-15 as of 1 January 2006. Wooden packaging will therefore have to be treated according to ISPM-15 and marked.

A phytosanitary certificate issued by the Regional Plant Protection Service is no longer required 

The same document also states that only HT heat treatment (56°C/30 minutes) will be accepted for wood packaging materials coming from countries or regions where the Pinewood Nematode is present.
The IPPC/FAO mark replaces the phytosanitary certificate, which will no longer be issued by the Phytosanitary Services, as it is no longer covered by the provisions of the importing country. Wood packaging must be produced by companies accredited by the regional phytosanitary services or by the “Consorzio Servizi Legno-Sughero”.
Wooden packaging shall:

  • be free of bark;
  • be treated according to FAO ISPM-15 (heat treatment or fumigation treatment) prior to export to China;
  • bear, at least on two opposite sides, and in a visible manner the IPPC/FAO Mark.

Please also note that the FAO ISPM-15 applies only to unfinished wood packaging used in international trade, excluding packaging made entirely of 'wood-based products' such as plywood, particleboard, MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard), OSB (Oriented Strand Board), etc., which have been exposed to high temperatures, pressure or the use of adhesives during their production process.
Shipments without raw wood packaging (i.e. with packaging made entirely from 'wood products') may be accompanied by a specific declaration of 'No solid/raw wood packing material' completed by the exporter.

L'Australia has notified the WTO (World Trade Organization) of the implementation of ISPM Explanatory Document 15:2009 (Regulation of Wooden Packaging Material in International Trade) as of 1 September 2004.
All wood packaging (including dunnage) used for shipments to Australia must be handled and marked according to ISPM Standard No.15. (This requirement must also be reflected in the "Packing Declaration" to be completed by the exporting officer).

Please note that wooden packaging (including dunnage) must be made from debarked wood and that it may still be subject to inspection and/or treatment once it reaches its destination.

Please also note that AQIS (Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service) has recently carried out a review of the documentation required for customs clearance of imported goods, so for anything not specifically mentioned please refer directly to the official AQIS website.

In particular, the export procedures called "Cargo containers - quarantine aspects and procedures", i.e. the simplified export procedures for containers, containing wood and/or dunnage packaging, are highlighted. The document describes the procedures and requirements that must be met in order to obtain these facilities (including the declaration of compliance with ISPM No 15). For further details please refer to the official website.

Please note that all declarations must be made in English, using the formats provided by AQIS.

In addition to the foreseen measures by ISPM No 15, Australia recognises a number of AQIS-approved alternative treatments to facilitate exports from countries that have not yet implemented control systems for packaging treated and marked according to ISPM No 15.

PMore information on alternative treatments can be found at http://www.daff.gov.au/aqis/import/icon-icd by entering "Timber packaging and dunnage" in the search field.

The FAO ISPM 15:2009 Explanatory Document was initially signed by more than 120 WTO member countries, i.e. countries agree with the content of the Standard but may not have already introduced it into their national regulations and applied it.

For a complete list of countries that have joined the FAO's ISPM 15 please visit: https://www.ippc.int/en/countries/all/ispm15/

Contact us
Nous vous informons que la société sera fermée du jeudi 25 avril au mercredi 1er mai 2024 inclus.
Les expéditions reprendront le jeudi 2 mai 2024