National Plant Board
Plant Quarantine, Nursery Inspection, and Certification Guidelines
Definitions and Guidelines Supplemental to Principles of Plant Quarantines
“Principles of Plant Quarantine” were adopted by the National Plant Board on July 25, 1931, and amended in 1936. Thirty years and many quarantines later, these principles appear to be just as sound today as when originally adopted.
It now appears desirable to supplement these principles with a set of basic definitions and general guidelines to be considered in preparing quarantines and supporting documents which should promote greater uniformity of plant quarantine actions throughout the United States.
The definitions and guidelines contained in this memorandum have been reviewed and approved by the regional plant boards. The National Plant Board, therefore, recommends that these definitions and guidelines be used to supplement the “Principles of Plant Quarantine.” It is the belief of the National Plant Board that these definitions and guidelines should lead to greater understanding in the uniformity of quarantine procedures with resultant benefits to regulatory officials and individuals and concerns affected by such regulations.
Definitions of Terms
1. Certificate. An authenticated document, label, or stamp input affirming compliance with quarantine restrictions affecting movement of regulated articles, indicating that such articles are free of the live quarantined pest.
2. Compliance Agreement. A written agreement which a person engaged in growing, dealing in, or moving regulated articles may be required to sign, in which the person agrees to comply with conditions specified in the agreement on the basis of which a certificate or permit may be issued for movements of regulated articles.
3. Host. Any plant or plant product designated in the quarantine upon which the quarantined subject pest is dependent for completion of any portion of its life cycle.
4. Infested. Actually infested with the pest or so exposed to infestation that would be reasonable to believe that an infestation exists.
5. Inspector. An employee of the regulatory agency concerned or other person authorized by the agency or under basic State law to enforce the provisions of the quarantine and regulations.
6. Limited Permit. An authenticated document allowing the movement of specific regulated articles to a specified location for treatment, particular handling, or utilization.
7. Move. To ship, offer for shipment, receive for transportation, carry, or otherwise transport, move, or allow to be moved.
8. Person. An individual, corporation, company, society, or association or other business entity.
9. Pest. All living stages of the insect, disease, or other pest organism of plants or plant products against which the quarantine is directed.
10. Regulated Article. Any article of any character, as described in the quarantine, carrying or capable of carrying the plant pest against which the quarantine is directed.
11. Scientific Permit. An authenticated document allowing the movement of regulated articles or of the pest concerned to a specified destination for scientific purposes.
Types of Quarantine Action
Several types of quarantine action may be taken, depending upon the problems involved. These may be defined as follows:
1. Hold Order. An authenticated order or notice issued to the owner or person in charge or possession of a premise, plant, conveyance, or article infested or exposed to infestation, making it unlawful to move the specified article(s) set forth in the order or notice unless treated in accordance with prescribed procedures. If no less drastic procedures are available, the order may require destruction of the infested article. Hold orders normally are issued to take prompt regulatory action in emergencies. If continuing quarantine action is required, a formal quarantine should be invoked. Hold orders may be issued to retain necessary quarantine action on a few properties if eradication treatments have been applied and continuing quarantine action is no longer necessary for the majority of the regulated area.
2. Emergency Regulation. A regulation placed in effect without prior public notice in order to take immediate regulatory action.
3. Federal quarantine. A quarantine invoked under provisions of the Plant Quarantine Act. There are two general types–those regulating domestic interstate movement and those regulating movements from foreign countries. (a) Federal domestic plant quarantines are applicable to pests within the United States. Control over the movement of regulated articles is applied at source. Federal domestic quarantines apply only to interstate movement. (b) Federal foreign quarantines are applicable to pests in foreign areas known to be infested. Control over movement is applied at the U.S. port of entry (except under special circumstances through special arrangement with the exporting country).
4. State Plant Quarantine. A quarantine adopted under authority of State law.
(a) State Interior Quarantine
A quarantine regulation adopted by a State against a pest of no apparent quarantine significance to any other State, to prevent spread of the pest within its borders; or one adopted by a single infested State against a pest of regional or national significance when no Federal domestic quarantine is adopted to prevent spread of the pest within and from the infested State.
(b) Parallel State Interior Quarantine
A quarantine regulation adopted by an infested State, against a pest which is not distributed throughout the State; and the pest is also subject of a Federal domestic quarantine, and it is desired to regulate only the infested portion of the State. Areas to be regulated should be described in both the State and Federal domestic quarantines and both quarantines should be parallel with respect to the basic requirements needed to prevent spread. The State quarantine regulates intrastate movement and the Federal quarantine regulates interstate movement from the regulated portion of the State. Such quarantine action is required if the Federal quarantine is to apply only to the infested portion of the State.
(c) Uniform State Quarantine
A quarantine or regulation adopted by two or more infested States which are parallel with respect to their basic requirements. The regulated area in each such uniform State quarantine should describe the area to be regulated in the issuing State and should include a reference to regulated areas of all other infested States under uniform State quarantine. If a pest of regional or national significance occurs only in limited areas of one or a few States and no Federal domestic quarantine is anticipated, an effective State Interior Quarantine adopted by a single infested State [see (a) above], or the adoption of Uniform State quarantines by all infested States, which will control both intrastate and interstate movements from all known infested areas, is preferable to the adoption of Standard State Exterior quarantines [see (d) below] by all other noninfested States.
(d) Standard State Exterior Quarantine
A quarantine regulation adopted by a noninfested State. If the pest is widespread in distribution and involves several States, it may be more practical for the noninfested State(s) to invoke regulations requiring such controls at destination as are necessary to provide protection to their industry. In cases where two or more States take quarantine action against such a pest, it is recommended that there be agreement and that similar action be taken by all States adopting or maintaining a quarantine against the particular pest. Such quarantines should be referred to as Standard State Quarantines.
1. Reporting New Pests. State regulatory officials should immediately report new plant pest discoveries within their State to the Plant Protection Division and regulatory officials of other States as he deems necessary. The report should include the name of the pest, identifier, and location of the find. Quarantine action or other safeguard measures being taken to prevent spread while the infestation is under investigation should be indicated. In this initial notification, the statement may simply indicate that all pest carriers, including host products, are being properly safeguarded before movement is allowed from the infested area either by the State regulatory personnel alone or in cooperation with the Plant Protection Division shall inform all States concerning the discovery and include in the report other available information, such as potential importance and actions that may be considered by other regulatory officials. As additional information develops, follow up reports should be submitted through the same channels to keep all State regulatory officials properly informed.
2. Notification. Quarantine action taken prior to public notice should be brought to the attention of all concerned regulatory officials immediately. If a Federal quarantine is in effect against this pest or a Federal quarantine is anticipated, all State regulatory officials should be informed and the affected State(s) consulted prior to making any announcement of action anticipated to adopt, amend or repeal such a quarantine. It is recommended also where Standard State Exterior Quarantines are applied that other regulatory officials be informed of anticipated amendments or revocations.
3. Federal Precedence. Biologically sound Federal quarantines take precedence over State regulations against the same pest. However, any State may adopt a quarantine or regulation against a pest or an area not covered by a Federal quarantine. Any State may seize, destroy, or require treatment of products moved from a federally regulated area if they were not moved in accordance with the Federal quarantine regulations or, if certified, they were found to be infested with the pest organism.
4. Pest Eradication. It may not be necessary to adopt or amend a Federal quarantine to include a State that is known to be infested, provided the State is taking necessary quarantine action under its State law and is applying eradicative measures independently or is participating with the Federal agency in treatments to control or eradicate the pest. In such instances, State officials should adopt a specific quarantine or regulation which provides for the same control over the movement of regulated articles as is provided for in the Federal quarantine. The State also should, in cooperation with the Federal agency, conduct necessary surveys to detect, delimit, and suppress populations.
5. Uniform Quarantines. If all States known to be infested with a pest adopt uniform quarantines, which provide protection to all noninfested States as well as to noninfested portions of the infested States, noninfested States should not invoke a quarantine against the infested States. By mutual agreement, Federal regulatory agencies may participate with State regulatory officials in the enforcement of Uniform State Quarantines and State Interior Quarantines directed against pests of regional or national significance.
6. Treatments and Safeguards. Before adopting or amending any treatment or safeguard procedure to be utilized in a Federal domestic plant quarantine, there should be agreement between the affected State regulatory officials and the Federal agency. Likewise, treatments and safeguard procedures to be utilized in State Uniform Quarantines and State Interior Quarantines directed against pests of regional or national significance should be agreed upon by all States adopting such regulations and with the Plant Protection Division if it participates in the program directed against the pest. Agreement between State regulatory officials also is desirable for Standard State Quarantines.
7. Interstate Shipments. Any regulated article that is prohibited interstate movement or is required to be certified, if moved interstate from a regulated area by a State or Federal quarantine at source, should be refused by any destination State regulatory official if so moved in violation of, or not certified in accordance with, the quarantine in effect at the source. If only a portion of the source State is under such a State or Federal quarantine at source, the destination State regulatory official should not refuse or require a certificate on any such article moved interstate from any nonregulated portion of the source State, unless the article is found to be infested or is prohibited or required to be certified under a specific quarantine of the destination State. The owner or carrier of regulated products which are reportedly originating in nonregulated portions of a quarantined State must provide proof of origin of the regulated products through an invoice, waybill, or other shipping document to the satisfaction in the receiving State regulatory official.
Basic Provisions for Inclusion in Quarantines
1. A notification of the quarantine and quotation by authority.
2. Name of pest organism.
3. List of regulated articles. The list should include the specific hosts and articles with which the pest organism definitely may be associated, and provide for the regulation of any other article the movement of which may present a hazard of spread whenever such a hazard has been determined by an authorized inspector, and when the owner or possessor thereof has been so notified.
4. Provisions for exempting articles from specified requirements. Certification or treatment may be waived for certain articles under specified conditions. These may be specified in a separate document or in the listing of regulated articles, whichever procedure is the most feasible.
5. Description of Regulated Areas. Depending upon the nature of the pest and known distribution, the regulated area to be described in the quarantine may involve the entire State, portion(s) of the State (areas), or list of names and locations of infested properties.
(a) Regulated areas may be subdivided into suppressive and generally infested areas in those quarantines where it is desirable to augment suppressive or eradicative measures being applied in certain areas, and it is believed necessary to control movement into such areas from generally infested areas.
(b) Wherever basic laws provide the authority to do so, it would be desirable to include provisions in the quarantine for adding to the regulated area any other area known to be infested, or which is found to be infested after adoption of the quarantine, when so declared by the authorized regulatory official through publication of a notice to that effect in local newspapers or through direct written notice to affected property owners or by other legally prescribed procedures.
(c) When it is determined that infestation in a certain regulated area has been eliminated through the application of treatments, to the extent that movements of the regulated articles therefrom would no longer present a pest risk, except movement from a few remaining infested properties in the area which can be controlled by the regulatory official of the source State by serving a written hold order on each owner of an infested property, the quarantine may be lifted on such a regulated area, and it should not be necessary to list in the quarantine the names and locations of the infested properties under hold order. Another approach would be to exempt such areas from specified requirements until eradication had been achieved.
6. Conditions governing the movement of regulated articles from or within regulated areas.
(a) Certificates or permits should be required for the movement of nonexempted regulated articles when:
(1) Moving from a regulated area to any point outside thereof.
(2) Moving from a generally infested area into a suppressive area.
(3) Moving within a suppressive area where such control over this movement is desirable.
(b) Certificates or permits should not be required for any regulated article originating outside of a regulated area moving to another nonregulated area, or moving through or reshipped from a regulated area when the point or origin of the article is clearly indicated on a waybill, bill of lading, shipper’s invoice, or other similar document accompanying the shipment, provided that shipments moving through or being reshipped from a regulated area must be safeguarded against infestation while within the regulated area in a manner satisfactory to an inspector.
(c) Certificates should not be issued unless provisions of other applicable quarantines have been met and the regulated articles:
(1) Originate in a noninfested portion of the regulated area and have not been exposed to infestation while within the regulated area; or
(2) Have been examined and found to be free of infestation (This method of certification should not be allowed on certain programs if it is impossible to visibly determine whether the pest is present–i.e., nematodes, witchweed seed, etc. The thorough cleaning of a product is an authorized treatment procedure but the examination of such product after cleaning is to determine whether it is cleaned and not to visually inspect it for the pest.); or
(3) Have been treated in accordance with approved procedures; or
(4) Have been grown, produced, manufactured, stored, or handled in such a manner that, in the judgment of the inspector, no infestation would be transmitted thereby.
(d) Limited permits may be issued to allow the movement of regulated articles to a specified destination for limited handling, utilization, or processing, provided the inspector has determined that such movement will not result in the spread of the pest and requirements of other quarantines have been met.
(e) Control over the movement of regulated articles from infested premises to noninfested areas within a regulated area may be provided for when such control over movement within a regulated area is desired to prevent pest spread. This provision usually will be applicable only when eradicative treatments are being applied and would be handled through a direct written notice to the property owner concerned.
(f) Compliance agreements should be required as a basis for the issuance of certificates or permits in bulk to industry for their issuance, and they are desirable to explain the main provisions of the quarantine for that particular concern.
7. Provisions for movement under permit for scientific purposes.
8. Waiver of liability of any damage to any regulated products as a result of treatment and any cost associated with treatments that may be required.
9. Penalties for violations.
Adopted by the National Plant Board