International Shipping Standards Bring New Opportunities and Challenges to the Export Logistics Industry

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While the emerging ISPM 15 standards are not all that new, many countries, including Mexico, are preparing for the final enforcement date. Buckeye Diamond is readying for the rush.

New standards in pallet treatment (ISPM 15) are causing a stir in the shipping business. Many countries are beginning the scheduled enforcement of this new global standard, and shippers are feeling the pressure to comply. The US will begin enforcement (ISPM 15) Sept 9, 2005.

In March 2002, the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), an international treaty relating to plant health, passed a measure requiring that all solid wood packaging, (including both hardwoods and softwoods) be heat-treated or fumigated before they can be imported into any of the member countries that are part of the convention. That changed everything in the export pallet and wood packaging business. There are over 180 Countries that are signatories to the Treaty. As member countries began enforcing compliance, more and more shippers began scrambling for compliant pallet suppliers.

To be in compliance with the new ISPM-15 standards for wood packaging the wood must be treated in one of two ways: Heat treatment or chemical treatment. Heat treatment (HT) dictates that the packaging material must be heated until it reaches a minimum core temperature of 56 degrees centigrade for at least 30 minutes. This process must be done by a certified company that is audited monthly by an independent federally certified agency.

Chemical treatment -- or Methyl Bromide (MB) treatment -- requires that the packaging be fumigated with methyl bromide. Buckeye Diamond recommends Heat Treatment as the safest method for two reasons. First, the U.S. EPA is strongly advocating that the chemical methyl bromide be phased out of use due to its toxicity and secondly its alleged effects of contributing to the Ozone level depletion problem.

Today, more than ever, export shippers need a wood packaging supplier that can handle the growing demand for ISPM15 compliant wood packaging. "With current heat treatment capacity of over 100,000 pallets per month and 32 acres of asphalt storage, we believe that we are the largest Midwestern facility in ISPM 15 certified wood pallets and packaging." said Mike McAdow, Vice President of Buckeye Diamond Logistics.

For additional information regarding the compliance with ISPM 15 standards, contact Buckeye Diamond or visit


Mike McAdow, Vice President

Buckeye Diamond Logistics, Inc.


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