All imports of wild caught fishery products arriving into the UK on the 1st January 2021 must be accompanied by catch certification. This applies to imports from all countries.


Products Subject to Checks

The Regulation applies to imports of marine caught fishery products.

There are some exclusions including clams and other bivalve molluscs.

Freshwater and farmed (aquaculture) fish, and marine fish imported for ornamental purposes do not require catch certification.

Government guidance is available here:

If you are not sure if catch certificate documentation is required please contact the Port Health Authority responsible for the point of import.

If a consignment does not require catch certification the importer will need to provide a written statement quoting the consignment details and explaining why a catch certificate is not required (e.g. the fish are farmed).


Pre-notification – documents required

Importers must notify Port Health 24 hours in advance of the intended arrival of any consignment of fishery products.

Imports of marine caught fishery products can be pre-notified using a new system called PHILIS Document Entry System or PHILIS DES (via – if you are already using PHILIS Online then you can logon to PHILIS DES using your existing PHILIS Online logon details – no need to re-register). Guidance on completing PHILIS DES for catch certification can be found within PHILIS DES.

PHILIS DES can be used to upload all the catch certification documents and the commercial documents (bill of lading, packing list and invoice). The pre-notification form on PHILIS DES can then be printed and signed to be submitted in paper format along with any original documents (e.g. original catch certificate, original processing statement, original storage document).

The intention is to make PHILIS DES available for use from 30-12-2020.


What documents should a consignment have?

The catch certification documents required depends on the flag state (country where registered) of the vessel catching the vessel, and the country where the fish is processed/stored.

Original catch certificate(s) – required when the country exporting the fish is the same as the country the catching vessel is flagged to.

Original processing statement with copy catch certificate(s) – required when the fish is processed in a country that is not the same as the flag state of the catching vessel.

Original storage document with copy catch certificate(s) – required when the fish is stored in a country that is not the same as the flag state of the catching vessel and/or processing country.


Documentary Checks on imports from EU countries

Initially Port Health checks on imports of fishery products imported from EU Member States will be carried out on copy documents, however any original documents must be submitted within 10 working days of the consignment arriving.


Documentary Checks on imports from non-EU countries

Will continue as now with the requirement that original catch certification documents are submitted to Port Health before a consignment can be released.



Current fees for IUU checks can be found here.  Fish caught by vessels flagged to EU countries will be classed as low risk.