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Alinea Customs provide a guide to customs administration, border control posts, and export health certification.

Export Health Certificates are required to export or move live animals and animal products from the UK to the EU. They are not required by Northern Irish traders who export to the EU.

Export Health Certificates are required for:

·      Products of animal origin (POAO), fish/shellfish and all other related products

·      Animal bones, protein and other by-products

·      Food (including composite food), drink and agricultural products (including cereals)

·      Food for animals

·      Plants (fruits and vegetables) and seeds used as food)

To export live animals or animal products such as food and germplasm, traders must nominate a vet or local authority to sign an export health certificate (EHC).

The Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) will provide details of how to find an offical veterinarian (OV) or local authority to provide this service.

1. First traders should search for their product: Find an Export Health Certificate

2. Check what the requirements are to access an Export Health Certificate, for example under current arrangements, triangular trade whereby fresh EU meat products processing or free circulation in the UK is not permitted to be re-exported to the UK.

3. Register online for Creds – traders can apply for a block of up to 100 certificates to one country or the same importer. Traders must enter details about the export destination, the certifier, the origin of the product, how the product will be loaded, details of transport and the estimated date of export. For block applications, the estimated date is the first date the export takes place.

4. Products must be submitted for certification by an OV or local authority on behalf of Defra, and translated into the foreign language of the Border Control Post of the member state authority of the intended importer (s).

Access a list of EU member states Border Control Posts. It is advisable to contact the local authorities for associated fees which may vary according to region and the services required. As an example, the local authority in Hammersmith and Fulham will charge £173.20 for new requests, or £48.90 for repeat requests, unless the products are exported to Northern Ireland, in which case the certification costs will be covered by the UK government.

Export Health Certification

Importers should check if the CN code for their product is listed in Regulation 2019/2007 to find out if the POAO or animal by-products must be checked at a BCP.

Each individual type of product will require an export health certification, therefore traders exporting multiple consignments may require multiple certificates and should consider groupage exporter status.

An identity check will entail a visual inspection of the product to confirm labelling compliance, and that the content corresponds to the information provided in the corresponding document.

A physical check will confirm compliance with the sanitary and phytosanitary requirements of the EU. Temperature checks and analysis, laboratory testing or diagnosis may be required as well as checks on animal welfare standards.

A Border Control Point (BCP) must be specified by the importer to lodge the pre-notification and obtain the correct translation of the export health certificate.

The commodities that BCP’s are equipped to process vary according the region so it is a responsibility of the importing/exporting parties to ensure their goods enter via an appropriate BCP.

When your consignment arrives in the UK

When your consignment arrives, port operators may charge you to move it to the BCP. Official veterinarians or inspectors at the BCP will then check the consignment. This may include a physical check.

The result of the check will be recorded on IPAFFS and officials will give you a completed and validated CHED.

Leaving the BCP

You must not remove your consignment from the BCP or customs clearance area until official inspectors have completed and validated the CHED.

After your consignment leaves the BCP, you must:

  • make sure your consignment goes directly to the destination named on the CHED

  • make sure the original CHED goes with your consignment to its final destination

  • comply with any movement restrictions associated with your import

For further information please contact Alinea Customs.

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