The IPPC ePhyto Solution


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The Generic ePhyto National System is now live! All countries without a national system can now use the GeNs to produce and exchange ePhytos through the Hub. To find out more how to register to use the GeNS Click Here

Want to understand quickly what the IPPC ePhyto Solution is? Check out this Clip?

For all technical information related to the IPPC ePhyto Solution Click Here

ePhyto is short for “electronic phytosanitary certificate”. An ePhyto is the electronic version of a phytosanitary certificate in XML format. All the information contained in a paper phytosanitary certificate is also in the ePhyto. ePhytos can be exchanged electronically between countries or the data printed out on paper. ePhytos should be produced in accordance with ISPM 12 including Appendix 1.

The IPPC ePhyto Solution consists of three main elements aimed at supporting the exchange of ePhytos between National Plant Protection Organizations (NPPOs):

A central server (Hub): to facilitate the transfer of electronic phytosanitary certificates between NPPOs, either from and to their own national electronic system or by using the generic system described below. (To read more about the Hub click here)

A Generic ePhyto National System (GeNS): a web-based system that can produce and receive ePhytos, to allow countries that do not have a national electronic system to produce, send and receive ePhytos. (To read more about the GeNS click here)

• Harmonization: the structure and transmission of ePhytos will follow a harmonized format through the use of standardized mapping, codes and lists (Click here to learn more)

If you are a country interested to join the ePhyto Solution and would like to have further information on the requirements and steps please click here.

A Brief History:

Since 2011, the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (CPM) has encouraged advancement of electronic certification. CPM-9 approved Appendix 1 to ISPM 12. The appendix describes the format and contents of electronic phytosanitary certificates and their exchange between NPPOs and also references harmonized codes and schema.

To continue the development of ePhyto, CPM-8 established an ePhyto Steering Group (SG). The SG became responsible for increasing the understanding and awareness of ePhyto, supporting its implementation and assisting in the development of systems to support electronic phytosanitary exchange. The ePhyto SG consists of representation from 6 FAO regions and the IPPC Secretariat is seeking the participation of the remaining region. A member of the CPM Bureau also participates on the SG along with Secretariat support.

The SG supported the development of an independent study on the feasibility of an electronic hub that could facilitate the transfer of electronic certificates between national plant protection organizations. CPM-9 (2014) reviewed the ePhyto Hub Feasibility Study and encouraged the SG to urgently continue its work in preparing for the development of an ePhyto hub. The SG, under the oversight of the CPM Bureau has continued to:

  • Increase awareness and understanding of electronic phytosanitary certification (ePhyto);
  • Explore and progress capacity development opportunities;
  • Prepare for the development of an ePhyto hub, and
  • Consider implementation issues associated with creating an ePhyto hub

Information on ePhyto can be found by following the links below and to the right. Any additional information may also be obtained by contacting the IPPC Secretariat (ippc@fao.org) or by directly contacting the ePhyto Team (ippc-ephyto@fao.org).

Doc # Title Files Publication date
Guide to Joining the ePhyto Hub En Es Fr Ru Ar Zh Link 14 Jun 2018
1 Electronic certification (ePhyto), history and developments En 10 Sep 2012
3 A Beginner’s Guide to the IPPC ePhyto Solution En 21 Feb 2018
2 A Global ePhyto Feasibility Study En 12 Feb 2015
4 ePhyto Hub - Frequently Asked Questions En 19 Feb 2015
12 Report on the pilot of the hub En 25 May 2018
6 Factsheets Link 05 Feb 2016
13 United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) - Workshop on Implementation of e-SPS and Automation for Agriculture Trade Facilitation Link 09 Jan 2017
11 Policy on Use of the ePhyto Solution - DRAFT En 06 Jun 2018
9 Hub Requirements En 06 Jun 2018
10 Generic ePhyto National System (GeNS) Requirements En 06 Jun 2018
5 Standards and Trade Development Facility Project (STDF/PG/504) Link 17 Jan 2017
7 ePhyto technical documents Link 01 Jun 2015
Guide To Joining the ePhyto GeNS Link
8 ePhyto timeline En 27 Jun 2018

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