International Standard For Phytosanitary Measures

What is ISPM15?

ISPM15 is an internationally agreed standard for the treatment of wood packaging. Only timber pallets & crates that are going to be used for export need ISPM15 requirement. It covers pallets, cases and crates that are manufactured and recycled from non-man made wooden materials. Materials such as plywood and chipboard, which pose no risk, are exempt. In order for wood packaging to become compliant it is required to undergo either a process of heat treatment or fumigation, both of which must be carried out to an agreed standard, and by an approved source. Only once the packaging has been treated it may be officially marked as ISMP15 compliant.


Why do we need ISPM 15?

ISPM15 is progressively being adopted worldwide as a measure to minimise the risk of unintentional plant pest transportation, such as the Asian longhorn beetle and Pine Wood Nematode, the effects of which can be devastating, as the USA and a number of other countries have experienced.


What is involved in Heat Treatment?

It is required that the core temperature of the timber is heated to a minimum of 56C for 30 minutes. To achieve this, timber pallets are placed in our kiln with temperature probes inserted into the core of the timber. The kiln is then heated, whilst being monitored by a computer, until the core temperature is achieved and maintained for 30 minutes.


How do I know the timber has been treated?

Approved heat treated timber in the UK will be stamped with the UK Wood Packaging Material Marking programme (WPMMP) stamp, which is governed by the Forestry Commission. In order for us to retain our licence we have to be audited every six months. This audit is for the Forestry Commission to inspect our kilns, probes, monologs and our files. Every pallet will carry this mark in a visible location. (i.e. Pallet Block or Pallet Bearer)


Is a repaired pallet still compliant?

Unfortunately once a Heat Treated pallet has been repaired it is no longer compliant to ISPM15 standards. The pallet has to be re-treated and all previous ISPM15 markings removed. The cost to have a repaired pallet heat treated to ISPM15 standards is nominal