Most foreign nations require plants and plant products originating from the United States be accompanied by a federal phytosanitary certificate. Additionally, many states have specific regulations governing the interstate commerce of certain plants and plant products.
A phytosanitary certificate verifies that the plants and plant products were inspected, are pest and disease free, and meet specific import requirements. To facilitate agricultural exports in international and interstate commerce, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets assists Vermont producers and exporters by either providing inspection and certification services of plants and plant products being shipped out of Vermont to domestic and international destinations, or referrals to USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services, Plant Protection and Quarantine (USDA, PPQ) for inspection and certification, as necessary.
A request for a phytosanitary certificate should be completed two weeks prior to scheduling an inspection.
An Authorized Certification Official (ACO) or agency inspector will inspect regulated articles at agency affiliated state offices.
Travel to a business for an inspection to issue a phytosanitary certificate may occur in certain situations, including but not limited to
- due to the quantity/size of the regulated articles
- when an ACO/inspector is conducting a site visit for other plant health program related activities in the same geographic area.
Only a limited number of phytosanitary certificates may be issued per business per year, as determined by the Plant Health Team.
Federal Phytosanitary certificates for plants and plant products destined for foreign markets
- Federal phytosanitary certification requests involving commercial quantities of regulated articles (>$1,250) and requests requiring federal forms other than PPQ form 577, will be forwarded to USDA APHIS PPQ staff for their inspection and certification.
- Exporters to international destinations requesting phytosanitary certificates are expected to be familiar with export requirements. Exporters should go to the USDA-APHIS phytosanitary certificate issuance & tracking (PCIT) website to establish an account and review the importing country’s phytosanitary requirements.
- The cost of obtaining a federal phytosanitary certificate is either $60 or $106 based on value of shipment.
- Federal phytosanitary certificates generally expire 14 days from the date of issuance, if an export does not happen within 14 days a new inspection may be necessary. It is important to plan your shipment accordingly.
There may be additional certifications required by the receiving nation, state or other entity, or the issuance of import permits prior to certification by Vermont. Contact the Vermont Agency of Agriculture's Plant Health team before you ship, and we will help determine what is required for your plants or plant products and refer you as necessary.
- Federal Plant Health Export Information
- Phytosanitary certificate issuance & tracking (PCIT)
- Request a phytosanitary certificate