Importers and exporters have spent a lot of time trying to figure out 10+2 lately -- and they are not practicing basic math skills. They are working toward complying with a new U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) cargo security regulation. The Importer Security Filing (ISF) regulation, enacted in 2008, but put into full effect on Jan. 26, 2010, is commonly referred to as the 10+2 initiative because it requires importers/exporters and ocean carriers to provide trade data -- 10 elements and two elements each, respectively -- for all non-bulk ocean cargo shipments arriving into the United States.

"Many importers must deal with a black hole -- from the point in the supply chain when merchandise leaves a manufacturer's factory until a freight forwarder takes possession of the goods," says Virginia Thompson, director of import/export operations and international trade compliance for furniture and home furnishing chain Crate & Barrel.

To help wrestle this large import/export business into ISF compliance, Crate & Barrel selected an ISF system from Charlotte, N.C.-based global trade management software provider Integration Point in early 2009.

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