Food (including beverages) which is exported may require an export certificate. Now that the UK has left the European Union, this may include exports to EU member countries along with Northern Ireland as part of new export arrangements.
The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and their delivery agent the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) are the main bodies responsible for issuing food export certification. In the first instance, food businesses wishing to export food should check whether there is a Defra-issued export certificate for the product to be exported, which has been agreed with the country the food is to be sent to.
Dartford Borough Council can provide export certification for certain types of food and beverages, such as:
- Food not of animal origin;
- Certain composite products (processed products of animal origin that have been combined with products not of animal origin);
- Manufactured food and drinks
It is the responsibility of the exporting business to find out what the import requirements are in the destination country before seeking to obtain export certification.
Certain countries may require the certification to be in a certain format or have standard wording. It is important to find this information out as inadequate information on the form may result in the destination country rejecting the goods. This information can be sought from the customer, embassy or trade representative.
There are two types of export certification that the Council can provide:
1. Food Safety Premises Endorsement for Export
This type of export certification can declare that the food has been produced in a food premises which inspected by the Local Authority to ensure compliance with the requirements of the relevant food hygiene legislation.
The certificate does not certify that an individual batch or consignment has been inspected or declared as safe.
The fee for this type of certification is a flat rate of £40 + VAT.
2. Standard Export Health Certificate
This certification can be requested if the destination country requires further reassurance about the safety of an individual batch or consignment. This may require the premises and the actual goods for export to be inspected by an officer before the certificate can be issued. In order to demonstrate that food is safe, it is likely that analysis will need to be carried out by an independent laboratory, and the report provided to the officer providing the certificate. It is the exporter’s responsibility to arrange and pay for this. Exporters should contact the Environmental Health Partnership first to discuss what evidence/samples are required.
The fee is £80 + VAT for the first two hours of work, including the certificate. After two hours, an hourly rate of £40 will be charged.
To pay the fee, please call the Council switchboard on 01322 343434 and state which certification you wish to pay for.