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What are the key customs and trade requirements?

1. Completed appropriate registrations to allow company to trade with the UK? 

  • Register as an Economic Operator - EORI - with Revenue  
  • Register with DAFM - Corporate Customer System (CCS) - person responsible for declarations 
  • Register with Traces - EU Trade Control and Expert System (TRACES) - platform for electronic completion of documentation required for imports from third countries 
  • Register for IPAFFS (UK) - system for the import of live animals, animal products and high risk food and feed not of animal origin into Great Britain (Deferred) 


2.  Establish customs commodity (HTS) codes for all products?  

  • Required for customs documentation on goods shipping to, from or through GB 
  • Available for look-up on EU Taric database  


3. Confirm with customers responsibility for Export and Import customs processes?  

  • Usually governed by three letter codes in contracts, known as Incoterms.   Examples would include EXW (Ex-works) or DDP (Delivery Duty Paid) 
  • Export clearance responsibility is usually with the seller with exception of EXW terms where the seller is still responsible to provide documentation to facilitate Export 
  • Import clearance responsibility is usually with buyer unless DDP terms.  If DDP terms to GB, may require GB EORI number and Importer of Record in UK. 


4. Confirm ability to generate commercial invoices for all shipments to, from or through GB? 


  • 16 fields of information required on the invoice  
  • Can use combination of commercial invoice, pro-forma invoice and packing list  


5. Nominate a knowledgeable 3PL / Customs agent to manage physical product flows and customs process? 


  • Can manage customs flows internally but would need training and experience 
  • Have 3PL confirm their readiness - registration of UK EORI, access to customs apps and documentation and sufficient resources 
  • Confirm pricing for customs agent and clearance services 
  • Put in place direct representation to allow them act as customs agent.    
  • Agree on the information required and timing relative to shipments 


6. Manage compliance on broker declarations  

  • Broker is responsible for making declarations as part of customs process 
  • Company remains accountable for declarations made on their behalf  
  • Suggest regular audit of declarations ahead of inspection from Revenue or HMRC 

There are additional requirements, particularly for larger producers and those with complex supply chain flows – clarifying product origin, customs warehousing, the application of special customs procedures, known consignor and known consignee programs and the ability to register with customs as known traders under an Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) certification. 

Support is available for Bord Bia client companies if you are unsure about the customs and trade requirements of doing business with the UK. 

What are the new food labelling requirements from 1st October 2022?

As part of the UK establishing its own regulations around products placed on the UK market, changes are required to food product labels from 1st October 2022 

Importer Address 

From 1st October 2022 any food imported or sold on the UK market will need to have on the label: 

  • the address in the UK of the business whose name the food is marketed under, or  
  • the address in the UK of the business that has imported the food 

This is to provide UK market surveillance authorities a local contact within the UK for any food products placed on the market. 

  • A PO Box, email address or phone number is not sufficient for this purpose.  

For imported products, the name/address of the business on the food label is the entity who takes legal responsibility for the information on the product label in the UK market.  

You may include additional information on labels (means you can meet both EU and UK requirements on a single label) 

This role comes with responsibilities including (but not limited to): 

  • Holding the technical file for the product, and being able to produce the file immediately if it is requested by a market surveillance authority 
  • Being the first point of contact for authorities if there is any query or issue with a product 
  • Co-ordinating any product recall if required. 

Options for Irish food producers 

There are several options available to Irish food producers. The best option for any food producer will depend on individual circumstances.   The available options are: 

  1. Use your own business entity in the UK 
  • May be a viable option if you already have a physical office or presence in the UK 
  • Consider costs and potential tax implications of setting up and maintaining entity 
  1. Use your distributor / importer’s address 
  • Need to confirm that they are happy to take on this responsibility  
  • Need to provide them with access to technical files to support each product 
  • Need clarity on legal responsibilities and costs 
  1. Use the services of a Third Party Authorised representative  
  • Professional companies that provide this as a service for a fee  
  • Typical fees include set up (by product / product group) and ongoing service fees 
  • Need to have food and drink experience  
  • Register as an FBO on behalf of the manufacturer 

For more information on the labelling address requirements please see the below link. 


Country or origin labelling 

There are specific food origin labelling requirements for: 

  • Beef and veal 
  • Poultry, sheep, goats and swine 
  • Fish and seafood 
  • Minced meat 
  • Eggs 
  • Olive oil 
  • Blended honeys 

Need to have country of origin on other prepacked products if the consumer could be misled by the packaging / description – for example ‘Danish Butter Cookies’ if the product was not from Denmark. 

Specific country of origin labelling requirements by product are also updated from 1st October 2022 set out in the guidance in the link below. 

A simplified view of this guidance is a requirement to update origin references from  ‘EU / Non-EU’ to references to ‘UK / Non-UK’.