Standard setting

International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPMs) are the standards adopted by the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures (CPM), which is the governing body of the IPPC. In addition, these standards are recognized as the basis for phytosanitary measures applied in trade by the Members of the World Trade Organization under the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (the SPS Agreement).

The IPPC is the only standard setting organization in the world, that sets standards for plant health.

Standards in themselves are not regulatory instruments but come into force once countries establish requirements within their national legislation.

The IPPC Standard Setting Procedure

The IPPC Standard Setting Procedure (SSP) was most recently updated by CPM-11 (2016) and is available on the IPP or as Appendix 07 to the CPM-11 (2016) report. Below, a PowerPoint presentation is posted that provides an overview of the SSP.

Stage 1: Developing the List of topics for IPPC standards

The IPPC Secretariat makes a call for topics every two years. Contracting parties (CPs) and Regional Plant Protection Organizations (RPPOs) submit detailed proposals for new topics or for the revision of existing ISPMs to the IPPC Secretariat. The Standards Committee (SC) reviews the submissions and recommends changes to the List of topics for IPPC standards (LOT) to the CPM. The List of topics for IPPC standards (LOT) is adopted by the CPM.

Stage 2: Drafting

The SC reviews and approves specifications for each topic that outlines what the ISPM should address.

IPPC members identify and nominate technical experts that are approved by the SC to develop the draft ISPM.

Stage 3: Consultation and review

The SC approves the draft ISPM and submits it for First Consultation and contracting parties provide comments to the IPPC Secretariat using the IPPC Online Comment System (OCS). A working group consisting of seven SC members (SC-7) reviews the comments and revises the draft ISPM as appropriate. The revised draft ISPM is then made available for the Second Consultation. Taking into the account the comments from the Second Consultation, the SC recommends the draft standard to the CPM for adoption.

Stage 4: Adoption and publication

Draft ISPMs are submitted to the CPM for adoption. If all contracting parties support the adoption of the draft ISPM, the CPM adopts the ISPM without discussion. If a contracting party does not support the adoption they may submit an objection to the IPPC Secretariat at least 3 weeks prior to the CPM. Concerned CPs should make every effort to seek agreement before CPM. The objection will be added to the CPM agenda and the CPM will decide on a way forward.
Adopted standards are published on the IPP.

The Standard Committee (SC) adopt draft diagnostic protocols on the behalf of the CPM. Once the SC approves a diagnostic protocol, it is subject to a 45-day notification period, which take place twice a year: between 1 July - 15 August and between 15 December - 30 January. During this 45-day notification period, contracting parties may submit objections and the draft is returned to the SC for further guidance.

This web page was last updated on 2017-03-23 by Brent Larson.For queries or comments regarding the contents of this page, please contact him at
Titre Fichiers Publication date
Biennium work plan (2016-2017) for the IPPC Secretariat: Standard Setting Unit En
Procédure d'établissement de normes de la CIPV Link 25 Oct 2016
Brochure: An introduction to the standard setting process En 08 Déc 2016
Brochure: An introduction for authors of IPPC Diagnostic Protocols En 08 Déc 2016
Factsheet: An introduction to the standard setting process En 08 Déc 2016
IPPC Style Guide (2017-04) En 10 Avr 2017
Presentation: the IPPC Standard Setting Process (Updated after CPM-11 (2016)) En 04 Mai 2016
Standard Setting Unit staff (2016-11-08) En 30 Aoû 2016
Standard Setting Unit at a Glance (2016) En 17 Mar 2017
Introduction to international phytosanitary terminology Link 23 Mar 2017
New sitemap for the SSU pages En

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