Importing Organic Products – update

 

Please see the below update regarding the additional controls applicable to organic food and feed produce from Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Russian Federation, China and Turkey.

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/25 came into force on 3rd February 2020. This made a number of amendments to Regulation (EC) No 1235/2008 regarding the controls for imports of organic products from third countries. The specific changes cover the following areas:

  • The third countries, control bodies and control authorities listed in Annexes III and IV of Reg 1235/2008 have been updated. The changes are detailed in Annexes I and II of Reg 2020/25.
  • The Certificate of Inspection (CoI) must be issued by the relevant control authority or control body before the consignment leaves the third country of export or origin. This applies to consignments leaving the country of export or origin on or after 3rd February 2020.

New Defra guidance has just been issued which extends the additional official control measures in place in 2020 and adds Turkey to the list of affected countries.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic the 2020 additional control measures were suspended, however, Defra have advised that the new guidelines are to apply from 1st July 2021 and will remain in place until amended or withdrawn by Defra.

The below table details the product and countries subject to additional controls:

Samples and Costs

Port Health Authorities will take and send samples to an accredited laboratory for analysis for the presence of pesticide residues. Consignments will be held under Port Health detention pending results of analysis. The Organic Certificate of Inspection (CoI) will only be endorsed when satisfactory sample results have been received.

Import controls are at a rate of 100 percent for the affected countries and specified CN codes.

Importers will be responsible for all costs associated with sampling and analysis of these consignments, and these charges will need to be paid before consignments can be released. Costs of analysis are to be confirmed with the laboratory.

For bulk consignments, where sampling is not possible at the point of entry, arrangements can be made, with agreement from the relevant inland authority, for inland movement and the sampling and analysis to be arranged by the importer. Port Health would issue a notice under Regulation 7 of the Organic Products Regulations 2009 and a charge of £120.65 payable by the importer.

Defra (organic imports) are the lead competent authority in the UK. The contact email is organic.imports@defra.gov.uk