Apr 28th, 2021
7 mins

The FSA have asked us to circulate the important message below, regarding recent information on consignments of high-risk food and feed transiting through the EU destined for GB: 

  1. On the 1st April 2021, Defra provided further information to businesses in relation to requirements for imports of products of animal origin (POAO) consignments that travel through the European Union to Great Britain from non-EU countries.
  1. This is not a change in the approach taken by authorities in GB, it is a reminder of existing rules which have been in place since 1 January 2021 and applies to all high-risk food, both POAO and HRFNAO (high-risk food and feed of non-animal origin), as outlined in the Border Operating Model.


In summary:

    • Direct imports of consignments of POAO and HRFNAO from non-EU countries must be imported into GB through an appropriately designated border control post (BCP). You must also complete a pre-notification of your goods using the UK’s import control system, IPAFFS (Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed System), which alerts the BCP to the intended arrival of the consignment. 
    • GB destined POAO and HRFNAO consignments originating from non-EU countries which travel through the EU will not have received full sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) checks (including veterinary checks) within the EU therefore these checks must be carried out at an appropriately designated BCP port in GB. 
    • These checks are not required if the POAO and HRFNAO from non-EU countries are destined first for an EU delivery address and those consignments are subsequently exported (either in full or part) to GB. That is because they will have undergone full SPS checks at the EU BCP at point of entry. This effectively allows them to be placed on the EU market and be treated the same as EU origin commodities and imported into GB in line with EU to GB trade rules. 
    • Further information on the transiting requirement is available.


  • Food Importers must be aware of the rules as it is their responsibility to ensure they comply with UK import requirements for high-risk food and feed. This is essential to ensure the proper procedures and import controls can be followed and provides the assurances that imported food is safe. High-risk food and feed which has been imported into the UK without meeting the specified import requirements is non-compliant and it is unlawful for such products to be placed on the UK market. Where such products are identified, appropriate enforcement action may be taken.
  • A list of all UK border ports and the commodities they can accept is listed on Further information on the import requirements of high-risk food and feed transiting the EU and all other requirements in relation to the phased introduction of UK controls on EU origin goods, can be found in the Border Operating Model.
  • If you have any concerns about this issue please contact the FSA by email: 

Please also find here and here presentation slides from an FSA Importers Working Group meeting the BFFF attended this week, which you may find useful.

Of particular note is the fact that there are two transit systems:

  • Customs Transit System
  • SPS Transit System

It is important to remember that they have different requirements.

POAO crossing EU Territory should have a CHEDP ‘Authorised for Transit’. However, the same CHEDP document is used for import. If valid for import, the CHEDP must have a watermark on the document and should have the ‘for internal market’ box selected.

The FSA would welcome any feedback on the above guidance, therefore please do not hesitate to contact should you have any comments or queries you wish us to pass back to the FSA on your behalf.


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