International Plant Protection Convention

General Information

  1. Type: Convention
  2. Date of signature:
  3. Place of signature: Rome, Italy
  4. Depositary:
  5. Date of entry into force: 03/04/1952

Category

Products

Sub category

General

Groups

FAO

What is it about?

This instrument is an international treaty promoting the health of plants. Its stated purpose is to secure common and effective action to prevent the spread and introduction of pests of plants and to promote measures for their control. Each State party agrees to create an official plant protection organization that must make provisions for the inspection of 1) growing plants, 2) areas under cultivation (including fields, plantations, nurseries, gardens and greenhouses) or 3) in storage or transportation. States must report the existence, outbreak and spread of plant pests and take steps towards their control. This plant protection organization provides for the issuance of certificates relating to phytosanitary conditions, the distribution of information within the country regarding pests of plants, and research and investigation in the field of plant protection. Each State party may implement its own restrictions or requirements concerning the import of plants or plant products. The present 1951 Convention was first revised in 1979 to address manufactured products that could threaten plants. An amended version adopted in 1997 reflects the agreements concluded as a result of the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations, including the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures.

Why is it relevant?

This Convention offers State parties a legal basis to refuse genetically modified organisms on their territory as well as a method of protection against the contamination of their vegetable species and the cultures by parasites and other sicknesses.

Additional Information

Several provisions of the International Plant Protection Convention are linked to those of the Convention on Biological Diversity of 1992 and its Cartagena Protocol; particularly those related to genetically modified organisms.

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