Goods or cargo carried from one place to another. Mode of transport typically being by
ship, train, truck, airplane.


The MPAS is set up by the Ministry of Defence to ensure that the correct packaging design
and procedures of MLP (military level packaging) are implemented to fit the MPAS design
compatibility standards, meeting requirements for handling, transportation and storage in the
supply chain.
John Pipe is accredited with the MPAS certification, allowing us to design and pack goods to
an MoD (Military of Defence) standard.


Collective defence: The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) was founded in
1949 and is a group of 30 countries from Europe and North America that exists to
protect the people and territory of its members.

Cargo Corrosion

Corrosion in cargo happens when the sulfur and water in crude oil mixes with
water vapor. Microbes can also break down the tank’s protective coating. (Mention
foil-wrapping service used to prevent this).

Dangerous Goods

Dangerous goods are items that when transported may pose a risk to the health and
safety of the property, environment or those on board the transportation. Dangerous
goods are also known as hazardous materials and dangerous cargo.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) regulates the international shipping of
hazardous materials.

IMDG is an abbreviation for “International Maritime Dangerous Goods”. This code governs the
majority of maritime hazardous materials and ensures their safety during transportation by
vessel, as well as the safety of crew members and the prevention of marine pollution.

ADR is an abbreviation for “The European Agreement concerning the International Carriage of
Dangerous Goods by Road”

For more information, click here.

Export Packaging

FOIL SEALING – “Vacuum Packing” – goods are sealed within a barrier (usually laminated foil) with inclusion of desiccant to maintain low humidity within the package. This is the best way to protect electronic packages.

HERMETICALLY SEALED – Goods are sealed into a polythene or foil bag, using heat to bond the bag together creating an airtight seal.

ISPM15 – “The International Standard for Phytosanitary Measures (Publ. no.15)” – a worldwide regulation governing treatment of wood packaging material – all our products comply and are stamped as such.

SHRINK WRAPPING – Goods are wrapped in polyethylene which is heated with a flame gun causing the polythene to shrink around the goods. We do not recommend this method for medium to long term preservation if corrosion is a potential problem.

Case or Crate?

CASE – (Closed boarded crate) – timber boards forming the sheathing of a case are close together such that it is not possible to see inside the package (plywood sheathing can also be utilised)

CRATE – (Open slatted crate) – when there are gaps between the boards. “Skeletal Crate” is a name used when the gaps are very large.

Export Packaging

Export packaging is the preparation of goods for global shipping. The required type and
degree of export packaging will depend on various factors including the product itself, mode
of transportation, and the facilities involved from start to finish of transportation. Shipments
for example would require an extensive level of packaging involving methods such as
‘foil-wrapping’ for moisture protection as a result of factors including exposure to humid
environments, transit time and increased handling in comparison to other transport modes.


SME stands for Small-and-Medium-sized Enterprises.
John Pipe has a history of providing export and freight services to SME’s and

Blue Chip Companies

A “blue chip” is the stock of a well-established, financially sound, and historically
secure corporation.


A carnet (pronounced kar-nay), also known as Merchandise Passports, is an
international customs and temporary export-import document used to clear customs
in 87 countries and territories.


Cofo – “Certificate of Origin” – a certificate certifying the origin of goods – often required by Middle Eastern countries.

GROUPAGE – The grouping of multiple sellers’ consignments together.

LCL – “Less thanContainer Load” – like a groupage but when a container is used – often if used as a consignment would not fill a whole container. This can be cost effective.

FCL – “Full-Container-Load” – when a consignment fills a container. Can be useful if the sender wants to load their premises and/or buyer wants to unload at their premises.

LETTER OF CREDIT – (Documentary Credit) – An agreement involving sellers’ and buyers banks which protects both parties in an international commercial contract for goods.

Military Type Packaging


DEFCON 129 – MOD publication which states contractual requirements for military packaging.

DEF STAN 81-41 PARTS 1-6 – British Military standard for packaging materials and design 

FAMILY SPECIFICATION – Defence standard for packing similar items.

LEVEL P – Packaging to withstand normal transportation & handling and protect standard item for up to five years in an indoor environment.

LEVEL N – As Level P, but additionally each item packed in its own box with enough protection to withstand rain for 5 minutes. Same protection against shocks and provision for mechanical handling equipment.

LEVEL J – As Level N, but packed suitably to withstand storage in any outside, worldwide climate. Greater protection against shocks.

MPAS – Military Packaging Awareness Scheme. 

NSN – NATO STOCK NUMBER – Unique identifier given to equipment or materials used in NATO. 

SPIS – Services Packaging Instructions Sheet. Specific packaging instructions for an individual NATO codified item.

STANAG 4329 – Standardization Agreement for Barcode – agreed by NATO. Also known as BARCODE 39.

United States Department of Defense (DoD)

Mil Std 2073-ID – US Navy packaging for barcodes (BARCODE 39)

Mil Std 129P – US Navy standard for barcodes

John Pipe International Styles

DIB – Several styles are available: These have strong structural bases where there is an additional layer of timber runners under the skids called dunnage strips. Typically would be used for goods over 500kg 

RIB – Several styles are available: These cases have a base which has a layer of timber boards or plywood and timbers underneath (sometimes called skids) to enable the use of pallet or forklift trucks. Used for lighter goods generally.

FEFCO – Double wall carton.

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