MBP 220

SECTION 220: University Stores and Logistics
Last Updated: April 29, 2019

University Stores and Logistics  
Angell Building
166 Service Road
East Lansing MI 48824 
Telephone: (517) 355-1700 | Fax: (517) 355-1717 
Business Hours:  Monday - Friday | 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 
University Stores Help Desk - (517) 884-6240
Shipping/Receiving - 7:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. and 
12:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. (517) 884-6082

I.    University Stores Warehouse 
II.  Logistics—Central Receiving 
III.  Logistics—Shipping 
IV.   Logistics—Distribution Services  
V.  Campus Mail  
VI. Hamper Rental

For Mail Services, refer to Section 325 of the Manual of Business Procedures.

University Stores is MSU's source for warehousing, distribution, mail services, supplies, and sales.

I. University Stores Warehouse

University Stores is a warehouse facility where Michigan State University's commonly used, high-volume items are stocked and distributed. Orders can be placed using the online catalog within Spartan Marketplace. EBS login is required to place an order. Discrepancies should be reported immediately by calling (517) 884-6240. Shortages must be reported to University Stores within one working day.

Back Orders

If an item is temporarily out of stock a backorder is created; reordering is not necessary. You may cancel back-ordered items by calling (517) 884-6240 with the order and item number.


Merchandise originally ordered and received from University Stores can be returned providing it can be resold and is in the original factory packaging. The order number, quantity, reason for return, and description of items to be returned is required. Obsolete or discontinued merchandise will not be accepted for return. Postage stamps may not be returned.

To return/exchange an order

1. Complete the Return/Exchange form (.pdf),
2. Attach the form to the item(s) being returned/exchanged, and 
3. Place in your mailroom for pick-up or bring to the University Stores counter.

Restocking Fees

Merchandise returned due to University Stores’ error or a manufacturer’s defect is credited 100% if returned in its original condition. Stock merchandise returned for any other reason is credited subject to restocking charges.

Elapsed Time After Receipt - Restocking Charge

Same day - one week
 No charge
One week - one month
One - three months
Beyond three months
 No Returns 
Regulated Chemicals and Compressed Gas

Ethyl Alcohol

Federal regulations on tax-free alcohol provide explicit directions on record maintenance and restrictions on the use of ethyl alcohol. You may not sell, issue, or give away alcohol dispensed for teaching and research purposes. Alcohol must be used as stated in the Internal Revenue Service Regulations (Distribution and Use of Tax Free Alcohol, Part 22 of Title 27, Code of Federal Regulations).

Ethyl Alcohol is purchased in sealed pint or one gallon containers, or in bulk quantities which are issued in one gallon increments. When ordering bulk alcohol you must have approved safety cans that are in good condition and with a label indicating the contents. University Stores can pick up, fill, and return the containers.

Compressed Gases and Accessories

Cylinder gases are delivered directly by the supplier to your department. A cylinder rental charge accrues until the cylinder is returned. Empty cylinders should be returned quickly to avoid extra rental charges. 

Report cylinders with suspected leaks immediately to Airgas at (517) 394-4660.


The Federal Clean Air Act legislation restricts the sale of refrigerants (freon) to certified technicians only. A Refrigerant Certification form must be on file with University Stores, or included with the order before a purchase is authorized. To obtain a copy of the Refrigerant Certification form call (517) 355-1700.

Personal Use Sales

University Stores items are available for sale to MSU faculty, staff, and students for personal use. Sales are subject to Michigan sales tax.

  • MSU identification required
  • Cylinder gases are prohibited
  • Chemical and medical items are restricted
  • Personal checks must include presenter’s drivers license number
  • Receipt required for any refunds or exchanges. All items returned or exchanged must be in original factory packaging with all labels or tags attached.

II. Logistics - Central Receiving

University Services Receiving serves as the central receiving point for incoming authorized departmental shipments, and is responsible for inspection and notation of all shipments.

Shipments are delivered by the next scheduled truck to the delivery location. Special delivery service is available on a cost basis with a minimum one-hour charge.

Central Receiving

Upon receipt of the package(s), the department signs for the shipment as proof of delivery. Signatures attest to the number of cartons or piece count, not the contents. Any shortages must be immediately reported to Receiving.

Material received in damaged condition must be immediately reported to Receiving at (517) 884-6082. The package and contents including inner packaging, must be retained as received. Do not remove anything from the package until it has been inspected and a determination made for return or replacement. Value of the damaged item must exceed $100 for a formal claim to be filed. The burden of proof lies with MSU if not reported within the same day of receipt of order.

Disposition of damaged items is processed on a Material Return Form (.pdf). Once a claim is initiated, Receiving contacts the department regarding responsibility for payment of invoices or handling of credits.

An overage or shortage arriving on a purchase order delivery should be reported immediately to Central Receiving at (517) 884-6082.

Receiving does not accept personal packages for delivery to offices, residence halls, Kellogg Center guest rooms, general contractors, or to organizations not affiliated with university academic or business operations. Shipments to campus must be for business purposes only.

III. Logistics—Shipping

Shipping ensures materials being shipped off campus are properly classified and adhere to all federal rules and regulations. We are responsible for the payment of inbound collect and outbound prepaid freight charges. Freight and air bills are processed, charges are verified and billed to department accounts. Departments utilizing the UPS CVS or FedEX Ship Manager platforms can avoid the 10% administrative billing markup by paying directly with a Pcard. Individual departments shipping or receiving merchandise directly should send all freight bills to Logistics Billing, Angell Building, 166 Service Rd. for processing.

Shipping determines the best method and terms of shipment. Purchasing and Logistics have negotiated campuswide transportation contracts to reduce overall shipping costs to the university.

For same day ground shipping, outbound parcels must be received at Shipping no later that 3:00 p.m. Shipments requiring next-day air and two-day air service must be received by 2:30 p.m. Shipments containing dry ice must arrive at Shipping before noon.

Material Return

Shipments involving a Purchase Order valued over $500 or those involving a credit require a Material Return (.pdf). The Material Return Form must be completed and sent to Purchasing before arrangements for a pickup can be made.

Service Request 

Use the Service Request for expedited shipping. There is no receipt when picked up from the department and it is assumed the department has made all arrangements for the recipient. The Service Request should be used for any material not involving a purchase order. Shipments involving a purchase order valued under $500 with no credit expected can also use the Service Request. All other shipments must use the Material Return Form.

Expedited shipping requests for the various airfreight companies, with guaranteed times of arrival, should use a Service Request. It is the department's responsibility to obtain a correct shipping address and make all arrangements with the recipient, including return authorization if required. Shipments containing hazardous material must include a Safety Data Sheet and a full description of the package contents.

If the value is over $500, or a credit or refund will be issued, a Material Return must be used.

When a Purchase Order is not involved and value is not a consideration, use the Service Request.

Warranty repairs can be returned on a Service Request.

The department must arrange for the Supplier Return Authorization (RA) and include it on the Service Request.

Repairs requiring payment are shipped using a Material Return. The completed MR, along with a Purchasing Requisition, must be sent to Purchasing for processing.

International Shipping

The International Shipping form is required for all international shipments. Twenty-four to seventy-two hours lead time is required.

Shipment of Hazardous Materials

Shipping personnel are certified to process hazardous materials. In compliance with federal law, these guidelines must be followed:

  • Complete the Hazardous Materials Transportation Form (.pdf) and attach it to the package along with all required documentation.
  • Biological, infectious substances and radioactive materials must be processed through Environmental Health and Safety at MSU.
  • Hazardous materials take extra time to process and must be coordinated with the Shipping office.

The Office of Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) offers certification for shipping infectious substances (Class 6.2) and diagnostic specimens by air. Departments needing to ship these materials should be trained through the EHS; for questions and to sign up for training, call (517) 355-0153.

Hazardous materials can include compressed gases, flammable liquids and solids, oxidizers, poisons, corrosive materials, radioactive and biological materials and dry ice.

Federal regulations have outlined specific shipping requirements for hazardous materials. Depending on the mode of transport and destination, these shipments are regulated by 49 CFR parts 171-180 and/or IATA. Materials shipped out of the country, even items that may not be considered hazardous in the United States, may be classified as hazardous in other countries. Hazardous materials must be properly classified, documented, marked, labeled and packaged prior to offering in to commerce.

Failure to meet regulatory requirements when shipping hazardous materials may result in citations, fines and/or imprisonment. Fines to the university can range from $550 to $500,000 per violation. Individual researchers and shippers may be subject to criminal penalties of up to $500,000 and five years imprisonment.

Federal law requires that anyone involved in or responsible for preparing or transporting a hazardous material must have DOT and/or IATA training and certification. No one offering hazardous materials is exempt from federal transportation requirements.

Domestic and international packages require 24-72 hours processing.

Personal Use Shipping Services

Logistics offers outbound domestic parcel shipping for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and retirees.

Please bring your package to University Stores and Logistics, 166 Service Rd. to ship using UPS, FedEx, or USPS. Shipping hours are 7:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. and cash, check, and credit cards are accepted.

There is no office pickup service for personal packages. We cannot accept

  • international shipments
  • hazardous materials
  • less-than-truckload shipments
  • illegal items
  • articles of unusual value (including, but not limited to, cash and jewelry)

Other restrictions may apply.

IV. Logistics - Distribution Services

Pick Up and Delivery

To request a pick up or delivery, complete the online Service Request Form. There is no charge for up to eight stackable boxes (approximately 17 x 12 x 15 each) or one hamper of mail.

The building and room number specified on the Service Request is the final delivery or pick-up location. To change a location and avoid additional charges, call (517) 884-6082 prior to the delivery or pick up. If the delivery location is a locked storage room, indicate on the form a telephone number to call prior to driver arrival. If a signature is required at a location other than the delivery point, this must also be indicated.

Services for uncrating, moving and set-up for special events, equipment handling, material handling and distribution are available for a fee. List of services fees

V. Campus Mail

By action of the MSU Board of Trustees and the United States Postal Service Private Express Statutes, Campus Mail Service is limited to the distribution of official university communications and the collection of mail for off-campus processing. [Code of Federal Regulations, 39CFR310.3]

Examples of business communications that can be handled by Campus Mail are

  • Notices of faculty meetings or other university department sponsored affairs or programs.
  • Notices of meetings of learned and professional societies.
  • Communications from one department of the university to another.
  • Memorandums from one individual to another when pertaining to university business.

Examples of communications that cannot be distributed by Campus Mail are

  • Non-university business.
  • Letters exchanged between non-university agencies.
  • Letters exchanged between students.
  • Requests for contributions (except Community Charitable Campaign).
  • Sales or collections by campus organizations or individuals.
  • Religious announcements, club announcements, and notices of political or organizational meetings.
  • Anonymous mailings.
  • Mailings for commercial, personal or private gain or those containing commercial advertising for organizations or individuals not affiliated with the university.

Addressing Campus Mail

The room number and building name must be the last line of the address. Example of proper address for campus mail

166 SERVICE RD., RM. 113

Large Campus Mailings

For campus mailings greater than 200 pieces, contact Campus Mail 48 hours in advance at (517) 884-6084.

  • Pieces must be addressed (including a building name), sorted by building, and bundled.
  • Self mailers (single or multiple page mailings not in an envelope) must be folded and sealed.

VI.  Hamper Rental  

Hamper Rental

Hampers are available for use by campus departments. Fill out the Hamper Request form. Charges appear on your monthly billing statement.