What is export certification for plants and plant products?
Export certification for plants and plant products is certification by the Federal Government that the plants or plant products intended for export are free from plant pests according to the requirements of the foreign country to which they will be shipped. APHIS does not require certification of exports. APHIS provides these services upon request of the exporter to help the exporter meet the requirements of the foreign country to which the plants or plant products will be shipped.
APHIS issues certificates in accordance with the International Plant Protection Convention and regulations in 7 CFR 353. There are three types of export certificates:
Phytosanitary Certificates certify domestic plants and unprocessed or unmanufactured plant products for export. Phytosanitary Certificates for Reexport certify that, based on an original foreign phytosanitary certificate or an additional inspection, the plants or plant products officially entered the United States, are considered to conform to the current phytosanitary regulations of the importing country, and have not been subjected to the risk of infestation or infection during storage in the United States. Plant products that are processed or manufactured to the degree that they are unlikely to harbor injurious pests are not eligible for certification with the Phytosanitary Certificate or Phytosanitary Certificate for Reexport, even when the importing country specifically requires such certification. In these cases, the Export Certificate for Processed Plant Products may be used. >>Learn More
Who provides export certification for plants and plant products?
Export certificates for plants or plant products are issued to exporters by an authorized certification official at the Federal, State, or county level. Currently, California is the only State with county officials authorized to provide export certification. Authorized certification officials are considered “inspectors” under the regulations in 7 CFR 353. State and county officials must meet requirements specified in 7 CFR 353.6 to be eligible for designation as an inspector. >> Learn More
What authority does APHIS have to collect user fees for these export certification services?
The Plant Protection Act (PPA) (7 U.S.C. 7759(f)(2)) authorizes APHIS to collect user fees to recover the costs of providing export certification for plants and plant products. The PPA also authorizes APHIS to retain the collections until expended for these services.
APHIS collects user fees to cover the costs it incurs when APHIS employees certify plants and plant products for export and to cover the costs it incurs in connection with export certification by authorized State and county officials. APHIS incurs administrative and overhead costs when it prints, distributes, and tracks certificates issued by State and county officials.