From 00:01 30th April 2024 traders must:   

  • Ensure goods arrive through an appropriately designated Border Control Post (BCP) or Control Point (CP) for your commodity type  
  • If called, present the consignment for documentary, physical and identification inspections at the BCP or CP 

Traders must comply with the requirement to pay any inspection fees and other charges and failure to do so will result in action being taken.  

Compliance with the new regime is a legal requirement. The UK government will expect the supply chains of goods subject to Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) controls to be ready for these changes on the 30th April 2024.  

Contact points for urgent BTOM queries   

From 30th April any urgent BTOM/import queries for plants and plant products across England & Wales should be directed to the Animal & Plant Health Agency (APHA), by email, in the first instance:    

Alternatively, you can contact them by telephone: +44 (0) 3000 200 301   

From 30th April any urgent BTOM/import queries for animal products should be directed to the Port Health Authority (PHA) at your nominated Border Control Post (BCP).   

Find your PHA contact details at your nominated BCP on this map.


Import notifications 

The requirement for Common Health Entry Document (CHED) import notifications to be submitted one working day ahead of a consignment’s arrival in GB is an existing requirement for goods from the EU and non-qualifying Northern Ireland goods from the island of Ireland.  Traders are strongly encouraged to submit their CHED import notifications as soon as possible to enable any issues to be resolved prior to their arrival.  

From 30th April importers should contact the nominated Port Health Authority (PHA) (or Local Authority (LA) in Scotland), to request a derogation from 24 hours to reduce the import notification window to a minimum of 4 hours if, by exception, they are unable to meet this requirement. Some PHAs/LAs may be able to accommodate a reduction from 24 hours to a minimum of a 4-hour import notification window, but this will be considered on a case-by-case basis for each consignment.  

For plants and plant products for goods arriving by air and RoRo CHED import notifications should be submitted 4 hours ahead of the goods arrival in GB. All other modes of transport must provide a CHED import notification within one working day

Getting ready for the new controls  

Follow these steps and use the resources to help you comply with the new controls and prepare for the changes that are coming.

Read the guidance on how to comply with your legal responsibilities for:  

Follow these steps and use the resources to help you comply with the new controls and prepare for the changes that are coming.

Read our guidance on how to comply with your legal responsibilities for:  

Getting ready for plant inspections

Places of Destination – an update
The PoD scheme will come to an end on 30th April. On this date, inspections of high-risk plants and plant products will move to designated Border Control Posts (BCPs) or Control Points (CPs). Alongside this medium-risk plants and plant products imported from the EU, Switzerland & Liechtenstein to GB will be subject to documentary and risk-based identity and physical checks at BCPs and CPs from 30th April.

It is important that you look to plan your journeys to BCPs or CPs as early as possible. This will help to reduce any potential delays to your onward journey and ensure compliance with the new UK phytosanitary regime. 

Follow these steps and use the resources to help you comply with the new controls and prepare for the changes that are coming for plants and plant products.

Read Defra’s guidance on how to comply with your legal responsibilities for:

If you’re importing fruit and vegetables from the EU to Great Britain, you also need to follow quality and labelling rules

Checks and inspection rates  

Types of checks and an example inspection   

You can find out more about checks and inspections by watching our recent trader webinar which provided information about different types of checks that can be carried out on consignments at a BCP, talked through an example inspection process and covered what happens after checks have been carried out.  

Risk categorisation and inspection rates

From 30th April 2024, imports are subject to identity checks and physical checks. The percentage of times identity and physical checks will happen (the inspection rate) depends on the risk category of the commodity being imported:  

  • high risk commodities are inspected every time the commodity is imported (inspection rate 100%)  
  • medium risk commodities are inspected 1-30% of the time the commodity is imported. The specific inspection rate (M1, M2 or M3) depends on the commodity and country  
  • low risk commodities are not subject to routine inspection, but may be subject to non-routine or intelligence-led checks  

You can now find the inspection rate information for animals and animal products imported from EU and non-EU countries under the BTOM. The risk category summary tables have been updated and now include a column showing the inspection rate that will be applied to that commodity. To find the specific inspection rate for the commodity you are importing please see the ‘inspection rate’ column in the summary tables.  

Defra have also now published the risk categorisation spreadsheet for non-EU countries. This spreadsheet can be used to find the risk category for a specific commodity that is being imported from a non-EU country. Search the spreadsheet using a known commodity code, or by browsing the list of commodities.  

More information about the frequency of plant health import inspections across GB can be found on the plant health portal  

From 30th April, changes to border checks will come into force for high-risk and medium-risk plants and plant products. You can read our guidance to learn more. You can also view Defra’s indicative fees for plant inspections. 

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