Never before has the need for accurate distribution data for plant pests been so important. CAB International (CABI) and EPPO are international organizations with a long history and strong involvement in collating and disseminating information on the global distribution of plant pests. Distribution Maps of Plant Pests and Distribution Maps of Plant Diseases, first published in 1951 and 1942, respectively, are respected, referenced sources of such data, expertly compiled and validated and used by plant health organizations around the world. They have been joint CABI/EPPO publications since 1997, and provide an essential complement to expanding knowledge on plant pest distribution. The Distribution Maps continue to be the most authoritative sources of information on the presence and extent of specific plant pests, sourced from the 4.5 million records in CAB Abstracts as a basis and numerous other sources. They also feed directly into CABI's Crop Protection Compendium (CPC) and EPPO's Plant Quarantine Data Retrieval System (PQR) databases. Their history, compilation and value are discussed.