Find out about changes for imports of EU agri-food goods

21 September 2021

On 14 September, the government announced further significant changes to the timetable for the implementation of checks and controls on EU imports into the UK.

You can read the government's announcement in full at the website: Government sets out pragmatic new timetable for introducing border controls

Border Operating Model

Under the Border Operating Model, the introduction of certain controls on EU goods entering the UK market, including Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) and customs controls, will be phased in. Under the changes, several of the key dates for implementation of new controls, such as the use of health certificates or Border Control Post inspections, have been delayed as follows.

Animals and Products of Animal Origin (POAO)

  • Pre-notification via IPAFFS for POAO, Animal By-Products (ABP) and High-Risk Food Not of Animal Origin (HRFNAO) from 1 January 2022.
  • Export health certification for POAO, ABP and HRNAO from 1 July 2022.
  • Entry via a point of entry with an appropriate BCP from 1 July 2022.
  • Live animal checks will begin in stages incrementally moving from the point of destination to border control posts from 1 July 2022 as facilities become available and are appropriately designated.

The government will introduce certification, documentary, ID and physical checks, by commodity groups for products of animal origin, animal by-products, plant and plant products, in three phases between 1 July and 1 November 2022. The timetable is as follows:

From 1 July, certification and physical and identity checks will be introduced for:

  • All remaining regulated animal by-products
  • All regulated plants and plant products
  • All meat and meat products
  • All remaining high-risk food not of animal origin.

From 1 September, certification and physical checks will be introduced for all dairy products.

From 1 November, certification and physical checks will be introduced for all remaining regulated products of animal origin, including composite and fish products.

Further information on the phased approach will be made available from early 2022.

Get more detailed information at the website: Import or move live animals, germinal products, animal by-products and high risk food and feed not of animal origin

Plants and plant products

  • Phytosanitary certificates will be required for regulated plants and plant products (including fruit, vegetables and cut flowers) from 1 July 2022. Prenotification via IPAFFS will still be required for these goods from 1 January 2022.
  • Physical inspections on regulated plants and plant products will come into force on 1 July 2022, and these will take place at authorised Border Control Posts.
  • Physical inspections for high priority plants and plant products (including plants for planting, some seed, seed and ware potatoes, used agricultural machinery) will take place at BCPs from 1 July 2022. Until then inspections will continue to take place at authorised Places of Destination (PoDs). Phytosanitary certificates will continue to be required for high priority plants and plant products, with prenotification via the PEACH IT system until the new IPAFFS system is fully operational early 2022.
  • The introduction of inspection fees for EU imports of high priority plants came into force on 1 June 2021 – the NFU continues to lobby for changes to the fee and inspection regime to ensure fairness for growers.

Get more detailed information at the website: Import plants and plant products from the EU to Great Britain and Northern Ireland


Full customs import declarations and controls will still be required from 1 January 2022 as previously announced. Safety and Security Declarations for imports will not be required until 1 July 2022 – previously this was 1 January 2022. Traders moving controlled goods into Great Britain will continue to be ineligible for the deferred customs declaration approach. They will therefore be required to complete a full customs declaration when the goods enter Great Britain.