ISPM 15 Phytosanitary

The UN FAO (Food and Agriculture Organisation) produced ISPM (International Standard for Phytosanitary Measures) No 15 - Guidelines for regulating wood packaging material in international trade, it was published in March 2002 and has been implemented by an increasing number of countries since then. The list 85i below summarises these.

IPPC international ISPM 15 Logo

On 5th October 2004 the European Union recognised ISPM 15 with Directive 2004/102/EC Protective measures against the introduction into the Community of organisms harmful to plants or plant products and against their spread within the Community . It relates to phytosanitary control for incoming non-EU wood pallets and packaging (not traffic between EU and Switzerland).

Discovery of the pinewood Nematode in Portugal has meant new EU requirements for coniferous wood and wood products being exported from Portugal. For information see below in 85g. Otherwise for wood pallets and packaging destined for other EU countries (download List 85i below) the only phytosanitary requirement is the absence of bark, wane and visible pests, though ultimately it is expected that implementation of ISPM 15 will be required between all EU countries. Since large numbers of commercial pool and exchange pallets are now HT as routine, it is advisable to apply that to all WPM from/to the UK and to mainland Europe is HT. One of the reasons is that a number of pests are not widespread in the UK and it is easier to (HT) comply OR use a pool or exchange pallet.

If you are involved with treating wood packing material (wpm) the Forestry Commission website is a useful source of information, if you require a list of companies accredited to carry out ISPM 15 treatment visit

Easy reference list for country requirents - Datasheet 85i below lists countries that have adopted ISPM 15 and also includes information on countries which require treatment that differs from ISPM 15 or does not require ISPM 15 treatment. Note that official translations of ISPM 15 exist in Portuguese and French and some countries eg. Brazil, use the Portuguese version NIMF 15 (the French version is NIMP 15)

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PDF65c ISPM 15 - Phytosanitary Standard - full copy of IPPC document (PDF 89kb)
PDF65c HSE PM15 vers 4 commentary (PDF 7kb)
PDF85a Summary of ISPM 15 phytosanitary requirements. (PDF 78kb)
PDF85b Methyl bromide fumigant for timber packaging. (PDF 11kb)
PDF85c Supply of loose heat treated HT marked timber (PDF 54kb)
PDF85e Customers requesting a certificate in addition to the ISPM 15 marking. (PDF 113kb)
PDF85f ISPM 15 treated wood packing imported into the EU to be resused in Europe. (PDF 11kb)
PDF85g ISPM 15 - Portugal - New phytosanitary requirements 2009. (PDF 11kb)
PDF85h ISPM 15 - Australia - Phytosanitary requirement - plywood. (PDF 54kb)
PDF85i ISPM 15 - Index of countries requiring treatment for imported wood packaging. (PDF 85kb)
PDF85j Australian timber import regulations 2016. (PDF 151kb)
PDF98d Timber embrittlement through unusually high kiln temperatures. (PDF 49kb)
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