Pre-Shipment Inspection PSI: Everything You Need To Know

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Pre-Shipment Inspection

If you’re an importer or manufacturer who regularly ships products to international markets, then you know how important it is to ensure your shipments arrive at their destination without damage. The last thing you want is for your product to arrive damaged, missing parts, or even worse, not at all. That’s where a pre-shipment inspection can help. Before agreeing to ship goods internationally, many companies require proof of an in-person inspection by an independent third party inspector from a recognized inspection company like East West Inspection. Learn everything you need to know about pre-shipment inspection here!

Is PSI important?

PSI is a mandatory requirement for every import and export shipment that enters the United States. PSI is important because it provides protection against counterfeit goods entering the country, theft of goods from storage facilities and port areas, cargo mishandling, and loss of product during shipment. PSI can be completed by an inspection company in China or a customs broker in the U.S. Whether you choose to use an inspection company in China or a customs broker in the U.S., PSI must be completed before your goods are shipped to the destination country if they are being imported into the United States. There are three types of inspections required for exports: physical examination, laboratory testing, and packaging inspection (by an authorized inspector).

How much does it cost?

How much does a pre-shipment inspection cost? A pre-shipment inspection is an overview of the goods being shipped to ensure they are in compliance with U.S. Customs and Border Protection regulations and that there are no threats to national security, such as weapons or drugs. The cost varies depending on the size of the shipment, the value of the goods and where you have them inspected. Inspections typically cost $1-$3 per item for small shipments and $2-$5 for large shipments. An inspection company in China will likely be cheaper than one in Canada or America, but it also depends on what you are shipping.

How can you prepare your shipment for inspection?

A pre-shipment inspection is an important step in the import process. It’s a chance for you to get feedback on your products, and it’s a chance for the inspector to give their input as well. Generally, it will be conducted by an inspection company in China with experience in shipping. 

It helps if you have all the paperwork prepared before sending off your shipment. Have all of your certificates of origin and quality control documentation ready, as well as any other required documents that pertain to your product or industry (e.g., MSDS sheets). If you’re unsure if you have everything, reach out to the inspection company and they’ll let you know what they need from you before they can continue with the inspection.

Are there different types of inspections?

If you’re shipping something to an international destination, there are three different types of inspections your shipment may need. 

The first is a customs inspection, which determines whether or not the goods you’re sending are allowed in that country. 

The second is a health inspection, which ensures the items you’re shipping don’t have any pests or diseases that could harm the country’s plant life and livestock. 

Finally, there’s a phytosanitary inspection to make sure your items don’t carry plants or seeds that can infect other crops. In addition to these inspections, your shipment may also need an evaluation for hazardous materials if it contains anything like chemicals or explosives.

Where do you ship to get inspected?

At this point, you’ve spent a lot of time and money getting your product ready for shipment to the customer. The last thing you want is for something to go wrong with shipping. Fortunately, there’s a way to ensure that doesn’t happen – inspection with ISO 9001 audit. Packing and shipping from your facility or warehouse to the distribution center is one thing; once it arrives at the distribution center, it will be inspected by the third party carrier before being sent out to its final destination. If the product isn’t up to code, or if anything’s missing from the shipment (maybe you forgot about a manual?), then it’ll be sent back for correction.

Final thought

Knowing what a pre-shipment inspection is and why it is necessary can help you make better decisions about your shipment. The pre-shipment inspection is the process of examining goods before they are sent to the buyer. This is usually done by third party inspectors who assess quality and consistency of goods. When you ship goods internationally, this kind of inspection is required by law in most countries to verify that the products match their description. Inspectors will also make sure that any product labels are accurate, if applicable, and make sure that there’s no damage on the items being shipped. 

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