With the United Kingdom having left the European Union, compliance with EU requirements as well as with conditions of entry into the UK market must be assessed in relation to all commodities (including plants, live animals and any product thereof). Increased traffic pressure on Community borders – as a result of inspections carried out at border control posts – is mainly concentrated on France and the Netherlands. Only a slight increase in traffic is expected to occur at Hungarian inland border control posts.

Up until the 31st December, 2020, UK had access to TRACES, EU’s multilingual online platform for sanitary certification and back and forth tracing of commodities. However, starting from 2021, the notification procedure for the entry of consignments changes. As such, instead of TRACES, UK’s own system, IPAFFS is to be used for notifying the border control post of entry, one workday prior to the foreseen date of arrival.

For further information please refer to the dedicated website of Nébih (National Food Chain Safety Office) by clicking here.

Plant health aspects of BREXIT

With the withdrawal of Great Britain (England, Scotland and Wales) from the European Union, Great Britain does not commit to a dynamic alignment of its legislation with the EU’s phytosanitary acquis and more specifically the rules on plants, plant products and other objects, as set out in the Annexes to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/2072, after the end of the transition period, meaning that it does not remain within EU’s SPS area. Therefore, the same requirements concern to GB as the third countries. According to this, the ban on imports of certain species also applies to GB. For the import of regulated goods, phytosanitary certificate is required and plant passport is no longer applicable. Some consignments can only be entered into the EU via phytosanitary Border Control Posts (BCP), and must be notified in advance to the competent authority by the operator who is responsible for the consignment. This shall be done at least one working day before the expected arrival at the first EU BCP, via the EU Commission's electronic system (TRACES NT - Trade Control and Expert System – New Technology).

From 01 January 2021, as the transition period with the EU has ended, UK has started to operate a full external border as a sovereign nation. The UK Government has taken the decision to introduce the new border controls in three phases up until April 2022 (new statement was taken on 11 March 2021). In phase 1 (01 January 2021 – 31 December 2021), physical checks are carried out at the point of destination or other approved premises on all high-risk plants, and there will be a requirement of pre-notification for certain movements, but they will not be required to enter GB via a BCP. For making a pre-notification, the British importer must register on the PEACH website (Procedure for Electronic Application for Certificates) (http://ehmipeach.defra.gov.uk/) at least one working day before the goods arrive in GB. From phase 2 (01 January 2022 – 31 March 2022), all regulated plants and plant products will require pre-notification and the relevant health documentation. Any physical checks will continue to be conducted at the point of destination until March 2022. From phase 3 (from 1 April 2022), full Safety and Security declarations will be required, while for commodities subject to sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) controls, these will have to be presented to BCPs and there will be an increase in physical checks and the taking of samples. SPS checks for animals, plants and their products will take place at GB BCPs and not at destination.

Requirements shall also apply for personal luggage.

If you use, produce or supply wood packaging material (WPM) to move any kind of goods to or from the EU or the rest of the world, you must make sure it meets ISPM 15 international standards.

Related sources of information:

·       Export from EU to GB: please click here and here

·       Import from GB to EU: please click here

·       Wood packaging material: please click here

·       PEACH: click here

For more information please refer to the following: ‘Preparing for Brexit Customs guidelines’