The UK is due to leave the EU, at 11pm on 29th March 2019. Realistically, very few people actually want a ‘no-deal’, however this remains the default status unless a deal, reversal or postponement is arranged.
DEFRA have therefore been planning for this situation, as in a ‘no-deal’, the UK will be treated as a third country and as such, export health certificates (EHCs) will be required to export many products of animal origin (POAO) to, or through, the EU27.
They have released 91 new EHCs that are relevant to POAO – the list can be downloaded here. There is also a new ET169 application form to complete for each one. It would seem that the exporter would apply with the ET169 and the EHC form to APHA, who print and post the EHC to the OV, as most of them are done now.
The final EHCs are signed by the OVs and there will be a hard paper copy, rather than a TRACES style validated online copy. It is not currently clear what will happen with TRACES certificates to countries such as Chile, Canada or Hong Kong.
You should check carefully which certificates are required for your products and we can then research fully the requirements of the EHC and the accompanying notes for guidance to see what checks and documents will be required to enable us to sign.
For exports outside the EU, there should be no change from the current system. There may be some wording changes to reflect UK rather than EU legislation. Please also be aware that for goods trans-shipping via the EU, an EU EHC may ALSO be needed.
The FSA have also released updated guidance about the use of the oval health mark. It would appear that:-
For exports to EU – either use GB or UNITED KINGDOM eg GB AB123 or UNITED KINGDOM AB123
For exports to non-EU, UK must be used eg UK AB123 (unless the country has indicated they will accept GB or UNITED KINGDOM)
For domestic use, UK, GB or UNITED KINGDOM can be used. The current EU mark may be used domestically until 31/12/20.
As you will be aware, this is a time of great uncertainty and we are keeping abreast of news and updated and ensuring that we are prepared for whatever deal, or no-deal, we end up with.
Please contact us if you require further information.