Implementation of ISPM No. 15

Wood-packaging material (WPM) transiting in the course of international trade (dunnage, crates, wooden pallets, etc. are used for transporting goods) is subject to regulation by a lot of countries, in order to forestall the introduction of pests into the concerned countries. This is in line with specifications enumerated in ISPM (International Standard for Phytosanitary Measures) No. 15 (2009).

In the year 2005, Canada as well as the USA executed import requirements as touching wood packaging materials. This was in line with the ISPM No.15 requirement, but decided to postpone its implementation on Canadian origin or US origin WPM transiting between both countries. Ever since, both nations have finished a pest-risk assessment associated with WPM and have discovered that many pest risks plus logistical issues may be dealt with by requesting that wood packaging transiting between both countries comply with this ISPM requirement. These include among others the improved regulatory oversight of WPM that came from a third nation.

Recognizing that regulating WPM transiting between Canada as well as the US will bring with it additional costs plus time regulators in both countries decided to create an integrated implementation process that will adhere to the requirements of ISPM No.15.

So on the 2nd of December 2010, the US made its intention known via a proposed rule publication. Stating in it of their plan to regulate WMP imports from Canada just like it has been doing for WMP imports coming into the US from other nations.

Consequently, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA); the concerned regulatory body has been revising the country’s WPM regulatory policies as far as the entry into and exit from Canada of these packaging materials are concerned.

Now even though full implementation time-lines may not be available at this time, it is expected that full implementation will take effect from not earlier than the summer of this year (2012). At this time, shipments containing non-compliant WPM won’t be allowed into the destination country. If pests are discovered, the importer might also be required to treat this shipment in order to forestall the escape of such pests.  This will happen before returning the said shipment to the country where it originated from.