International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) | IAS Target IAS Target

International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC)

The International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) is a 1951 multilateral treaty overseen by the Food and Agriculture Organization that aims to secure coordinated, effective action to shield and to control the introduction and spread of pests of plants and plant products. The Convention extends beyond the protection of cultivated plants to the protection of natural flora and plant products. The Convention is recognized by the World Trade Organization's (WTO) Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (the SPS Agreement) as the only international standard-setting body for plant health.

Signed 6 December 1951
Headquarters Rome, Italy,
Membership 183 parties, including the Cook Islands, Niue, and the EU
Languages Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish


The Convention developed a governing body consisting of each party, known as the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures, which oversees the implementation of the Convention.

Focus of IPPC

  • Focus on plants and plant products moving in international trade
  • Anything else that can act as a vector for the spread of plant pests for example, containers, packaging materials, soil, vehicles, vessels and machinery
  • The Convention also covers research materials, germplasm banks, biological control organisms, containment facilities, emergency aid, food aid

Core areas of IPPC:

  • Associated international phytosanitary standards
  • International standard setting,
  • Information exchange and capacity development for the implementation of the IPPC

The Commission of Phytosanitary Measures of the IPPC has developed a strategic framework with the objectives of:

  • Developing phytosanitary capacity for members to accomplish objectives of IPPC
  • Safeguarding sustainable agriculture and enhancing global food security through the prevention of pest spread;
  • Facilitating economic and trade development through the promotion of harmonized scientifically based phytosanitary measures, and:
  • Protecting the environment, forests and biodiversity from plant pests;

IPPC functions

  • Protect the environment from the loss of species diversity.
  • Protect industries and consumers from the costs of pest control or annihilation.
  • Facilitate trade through International Standards that regulate the safe movements of plants and plant products.
  • Protect farmers from economically devastating pest and disease outbreaks.
  • Protect ecosystems from the loss of viability and function as a result of pest invasions.
  • Protect livelihoods and food security by preventing the entry and spread of new pests of plants into a country.