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Shipping Samples to BAL from Outside the US

Shipping SamplesBAL analyzes samples from all over the world on a regular basis. Shipping samples across borders from a foreign country to the US is not uncommon, but there are special regulations and recommended best practices to review prior to shipping samples. Before shipping samples to BAL from outside of the US, always contact your BAL Project Manager to discuss the shipment well ahead of time! If you don’t know who your BAL Project Manager is contact us and we’ll get you in touch with the right person. Information specific to different types of international shipments can be found below.

Shipping Tissue Samples

The following instructions are for clients shipping tissue samples via FedEx to Brooks Applied Labs. If another shipper is used, these instructions may need to be changed.

  1. Create a FedEx Waybill and Commercial Invoice.
  2. The comment “CONTAINS WILDLIFE. HOLD FOR FISH AND WILDLIFE” needs to appear on the FedEx waybill.
  3. Also include on the FedEx Waybill the comments “WILDLIFE – Perishable Tissue samples” and “FWS – Common Name, Species Name, For Testing
  4. On the commercial invoice include the quantity of tissues as well as the scientific names of samples, number of samples, and the country of origin. Also, make sure the comment “WILDLIFE – Perishable Tissue samples” is included.
  5. With the waybill include a copy of our USFW Permit and a copy of the BAL COC.
  6. On the cooler please write somewhere obvious “CONTAINS WILDLIFE” “HOLD FOR FISH AND WILDLIFE“. *It is very important to mark up the cooler appropriately and include all paperwork with the shipment*
  7. Provide your BAL PM with FedEx tracking number(s) at least 48 hrs. prior to shipping along with the COC, copy of the FedEx Waybill, the commercial invoice, and a list of species names and their country of origin. You must also confirm that these species are not threatened or endangered. Your BAL PM will submit this information to FedEx and samples can be shipped on the date you indicated.
Shipping Soil Samples

The following instructions are for clients shipping soils collected outside of the U.S. to BAL. Your Project Manager will ensure that you receive all of the necessary documentation to include with your shipment either by including it with your bottle order or by emailing you electronic copies. When preparing your shipment to BAL please be sure to always:

  1. Address the soil shipment exactly as the address is written on the BAL Soil Permit
  2. Include a copy of the BAL Soil Permit with each cooler in the shipment
  3. Affix a shipping label (PPQ Form 550) on each cooler in the shipment.
    • Make sure that labels are affixed to each cooler. Each label must have a unique Label # (found above the barcode). Do not make multiple copies of the same label to use on future shipments. Contact your Project Manager if additional labels are needed and they will be sent to you as soon as possible.
    • Make sure that the permit number and expiration date on the shipping labels exactly matches the number and expiration date on the BAL Soil Permit. Discrepancies can occur if you still have old labels that were issued with an outdated permit.

Following the above steps will help ensure that your samples do not get held up at inspection.

Other Types of Samples

Migratory Birds – Special permit applies. You must contact BAL prior to shipping.

Hazardous Materials – Special labeling requirements apply. You must contact BAL prior to shipping.

BAL Road Warriors are Out and About!

BAL Road WarriorsEarlier this month, on June 13th, Brooks Applied Labs scientists were presenting at a meeting of the North American Metals Council (NAMC) Selenium Working Group in Calgary. Ben Wozniak (Technical Services Specialist) gave a talk on the Formation and Identification of Methaneselenonic Acid in a Water Treatment Process, while Russ Gerads (Business Development Director) presented on the Application of Solid Phase Speciation Analyses for Selenium Management. Contact us if you would like to know more about either of these topics.


Coming up, July 16th – 18th, Michelle Briscoe (President/CEO) will be heading to Denver to attend the US Department of Energy’s Analytical Services Program (DOE ASP) Workshop. This workshop offers new programmatic changes, best management practices, and lessons learned by DOE employees and the labs that provide the analytical services at many of the DOE sites. Michelle will be participating in a panel discussion to provide feedback to the DOE on the new accreditation program from the laboratory’s perspective.

BAL Cyclers Ride for Bike-O-Ween

BAL Cyclers with Victory Baguettes

May was Bike Everywhere Month and several of us from BAL’s bike team – Pedal to the Metal – joined in! Captain Frank McFarland, Rick Manson, Fiona Bellows, and Colin Brady participated this year by riding their bikes around the Seattle area as much as possible, reducing CO2 emissions while getting a little exercise and having a lot fun. But what exactly is “Bike-O-Ween”? That is the day our intrepid cyclists collect food and swag from strangers on their ride into work (May 17th: Bike Everywhere Day). Starting their journey at Seattle’s Fremont Bridge, they rode around town, stopping at the many of the Celebration Stations set up along the way, before hitting the Burke-Gilman Trail for the 21-mile trek to the lab in Bothell, holding aloft their victory baguettes in salute of the day.