DEFRA announces updates to organic food and feed import requirements

by | Sep 15, 2023

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) are making immediate changes to the Certificate of Inspection (COI) template. It has been announced that organic food and feed imports into Great Britain will change, as well as a delay to the requirement for COIs from the EU, EEA and Switzerland.

Certificate of Inspection template amendment

From 1 September 2023, the new template will be used for imports into Great Britain, with the exception of consignments that left the country of export before this date. One of the main changes is to the COI and extract COI templates and notes, specifically box 2, which outlines the organics regulations.

There are two options in box 2 and they should be checked depending on whether the import is from a third country listed on Annex III, or whether it is certified by a control body appearing on Annex IV as approved to operate in the third country the products originate from.

EU, EEA and Switzerland

DEFRA is delaying the requirement for COIs for organic products from the EU, EEA and Switzerland until 1 February 2025, allowing more time to explore potential improvements to the existing processes.

Although the requirement for COIs has not been implemented for organic products imported from the EU, it is important to note that products must still comply to the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA). This means that products must be produced or processed in the European Union to be accepted in Great Britain and vice versa; something that has been included in guidance since Great Britain left the EU.

If you have any questions or need more information regarding customs, please call 01304 211652 or email enquiries@customsinsights.co.uk

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