Extracts string messages for translation from modules that use React Intl.


$ npm install babel-plugin-react-intl


This Babel plugin only visits ES6 modules which import React Intl.

The default message descriptors for the app's default language will be extracted from: defineMessages(), defineMessage(), and <FormattedMessage>; all of which are named exports of the React Intl package.

If a message descriptor has a description, it'll be removed from the source after it's extracted to save bytes since it isn't used at runtime.

Via .babelrc (Recommended)


"plugins": [
"messagesDir": "./build/messages/"



The target location where the plugin will output a .json file corresponding to each component from which React Intl messages were extracted. If not provided, the extracted message descriptors will only be accessible via Babel's API.


The folder to resolve relative path of source file to. This is used to control the directory structure of messagesDir. For example, when extractin from:

|- src
|-- subdir
|--- file1.js

and workspaceRoot is set to src, messagesDir output will have the structure:

|- subdir
|-- file1.js

Specifying an invalid workspaceRoot (e.g if we encounter a file during parsing that does not live under workspaceRoot) will throw an Error.


Whether the metadata about the location of the message in the source file should be extracted. If true, then file, start, and end fields will exist for each extracted message descriptors. Defaults to false.


The ES6 module source name of the React Intl package. Defaults to: "react-intl", but can be changed to another name/path to React Intl.


A function with the signature (id: string, defaultMessage: string, description: string|object) => string which allows you to override the ID both in the extracted javascript and messages.


Remove defaultMessage field in generated js after extraction.


Additional component names to extract messages from, e.g: ['FormattedFooBarMessage']. NOTE: By default we check for the fact that FormattedMessage are imported from moduleSourceName to make sure variable alias works. This option does not do that so it's less safe.


Opt-in to extract from intl.formatMessage call with the same restrictions, e.g: has to be called with object literal such as intl.formatMessage({ id: 'foo', defaultMessage: 'bar', description: 'baz'})


output file with empty [] if src has no messages. For build systems like bazel that relies on specific output mapping, not writing out a file can cause issues.


parse specific additional custom pragma. This allows you to tag certain file with metadata such as project. For example with this file:

// @intl-meta project:my-custom-project
import {FormattedMessage} from 'react-intl';
<FormattedMessage defaultMessage="foo" id="bar" />;

and with option {pragma: "@intl-meta"}, we'll parse out // @intl-meta project:my-custom-project into {project: 'my-custom-project'} in the result file.

Via Node API

The extract message descriptors are available via the metadata property on the object returned from Babel's transform() API:

require('@babel/core').transform('code', {
plugins: ['react-intl'],
}); // => { code, map, ast, metadata['react-intl'].messages, metadata['react-intl'].meta };