Plants are identified by a five-letter code, other organisms by a six-letter one. In many cases the codes are
mnemonic abbreviations of the
scientific name of the organism, derived from the first three or four letters of the
genus and the first two letters of the
species. For example, corn, or maize (Zea mays), was assigned the code "ZEAMA"; the code for potato late blight (Phytophthora infestans) is "PHYTIN". The unique and constant code for each organism provides a shorthand method of recording specie. The EPPO code avoids many of the problems caused by revisions to scientific names and taxonomy which often result in different synonyms being in use for the same species. When the taxonomy changes, the EPPO code stays the same. The EPPO system is used by governmental organizations, conservation agencies, and researchers.
^Francis, A; Warwick, S I (July 2009). "The Biology of Canadian Weeds. 142. Camelina alyssum (Mill.) Thell.; C. microcarpa Andrz. ex DC.; C. sativa (L.) Crantz". Canadian Journal of Plant Science. 89 (4): 791–810.