The UK/EU trade deal as finalised between Christmas and New Year serves to confirm that all wooden packaging materials (WPM) must be ISPM15 compliant with effect from 1st January 2021. The transitional trade agreement between the UK and EU which was due to expire on 31st December 2020 also included this obligation. This formally confirms that the future requirements for WPM that are being shipped together with goods from the UK to EU markets must be identical in respect of treatment as they are for all WTO countries.
Wooden Packaging Material (WPM), including pallets and lightweight and industrial wooden packaging are critical to the smooth trade of goods between countries. This was evidenced during the recent COVID19 lockdown periods earlier this year, when the governments of several countries in Europe designated the manufacture and repair of pallets and packaging as ‘essential’ sectors, which should continue operating throughout the pandemic restrictions to ensure supplies of items including food, drink and pharmaceutical goods.
Given the UK leaves the EU without any trade agreement either in eight days, 3 months and eight days or at the end of 2019 the fact remains that wood packaging materials (WPM) exported from the UK to the EU will require to be ISPM15 compliant (Heat Treated); and the same will apply for goods entering the UK from the EU.
Following our recent Brexit news story, The Guardian newspaper contacted us for further information, as they were seeking to run a news item about the UK facing a pallet crisis if there is a no-deal Brexit. Find out more about what Chris had to say.
As there is now little time before March 29th, 2019, DEFRA and its EU counterparts have discussed the matter of ISPM15 compliance of wood packaging material (WPM) after we leave the EU.