1. General
1.1 Shipments of live plant material have to comply with applicable international and national phytosanitary regulations. These regulations very often dictate the way in which plant material may be transferred from country to country, they not only cover the form in which the plant specimens may be transferred but also the materials and methods which may be used in packaging.
1.2 Plant specimens should be given high priority over non-living items during all phases of transportation and handling.
1.3 Generally, only healthy pest-free plant specimens should be transported. Certain plants may need preconditioning to meet environmental conditions to be encountered in transit or at the final destination.
1.4 To obtain optimum success in propagation and cultivation, live plant material should be transported as rapidly as possible, which usually means by air, using the pressurised compartment of the aircraft. Except for seeds, surface mail should not be used for long-distance transport of plant specimens.
1.5 Quarantine authorities should not impose fumigation treatments what will injure plant specimens, particularly specimens of taxa included in Appendix I of CITES.
2. Advance arrangements for transport
2.1 It should be the consignor's responsibility to ensure that adequate advance arrangements are made to care for the plant specimens until the consignee takes them into his charge.
2.2 All possible precautions should be taken in advance to ensure that shipment containers are kept dry, and not exposed to desiccating conditions, and that they are not left exposed to the sun, extreme heat, or freezing conditions (temperatures). Plants should be stored in such a manner that they have adequate ventilation.
2.3 The estimated time of arrival of the plant specimens should be notified in advance to the consignee, and also the route of the consignment.
3. Packaging
3.1 Plant quarantine import requirements of the country of destination should be consulted before plants are packaged and shipped. No packaging materials or methods should be used which would be contrary to those requirements or which would make port of entry inspection or treatment difficult. It should be noted that soil and certain other materials used as growing media or packaging material are prohibited entry into many countries, as a potential source of pests or pathogens.
3.2 Package should be strong enough to withstand handling and shipping.
3.3 Plant specimens normally should be packaged in a filling compound, in a manner to minimize desiccation, movement, and damage during transport, and to allow adequate ventilation.
3.4 Plant specimens normally should not be enclosed in airtight containers; however, propagating material (newly germinated seedlings and tissue cultures) may travel on culture media in tubes or other sealed containers.
4. Labelling and documentation
  Durable, waterproof labels or tags should be provided as follows:
4.1 "LIVE PLANTS – NO EXTREME HEAT OR COLD" on all sides and top. Label or tag should be completed with appropriate restrictions.
4.2 "THIS WAY UP", with arrows indicating the top, should always be used where appropriate.
4.3 Consignor's and consignee's name, address and telephone number. Postal box numbers should not be used as the sole address.
  Durable, waterproof means of containing the following documents and other essential information should be firmly attached to the package:
4.4 Duplicate of consignor's and consignee's name, address and telephone number.
4.5 Copies of relevant export and import licences.