Your Business & Brexit

Brexit has caused much uncertainty for organic farmers and growers, manufacturers and traders.

As the UK’s leading food and farming charity we are here to reassure and support our licensees following our departure from the EU.

Here you can find free information, checklists and webinars to help you navigate post-Brexit policy changes.

 

This information is correct at the time of publishing on 21st September 2022. Please ensure that you are checking the page regularly for current information.

Important updates and clarifications: 

21/09 - GB labelling changes (required as a result of Brexit) have been delayed from 1 October 2022 until 1 January 2024: For organic this relates changes to statement of agricultural origin (from EU to UK). Existing labelling that may have been non-compliant after 30th Sept 2022 will now have until 31st December 2023 to be compliant.

28/04 - The UK is postponing checks on imported food and fresh products from the EU until the end of 2023: This announcement means that the requirement for organic COIs from the EU, EEA and Switzerland due to come into force on 1st July will continue to be waived.

 

Need to know

As of 1st January 2021 there were:

  • Implications for export organic products from GB to NI, the EU and other markets. This applies to food, seeds, plants, livestock, crops and feed. Textiles and cosmetic products sold with reference to organic are not affected, unless unprocessed agricultural products or processed agricultural products for use as food. For example, wool, (not carded or combed); raw hides and untreated skins; essential oils for use in food (food grade).
  • New requirements for import of organic products into GB from third countries (includes EU) and into NI from GB
  • New requirements for exporting organic products to NI, the EU and other third countries
  • New labelling requirements for labelling in the GB and for organic products exported to the EU and NI

Checklist for your business

The following information has applied since 1st January 2021:

  • Exporters should ensure their overseas importers are certified, labelling complies with their country's requirements and if required, a Certificate of Inspection (or Import) is provided 
  • Both GB importers and 1st consignees in GB have a 'processor' license and a GB Certificate of Inspection should be presented at port (from 31st Dec 2023 for imports from EEA/EU)
  • Bour labelling for products placed on the GB market complies with any changes to UK requirements 

Changes affecting all Farmers and Growers

Imports

  • If you directly import animals, animal products, food, feed and high risk products please makes sure you are aware of the new IPAFFS system applicable for organic and non-organic products. More information can be found on the Government website here.
  • If you directly import any organic products please visit our importing page for the latest guidance.

Exports

  • Changes to live animal export came into effect on January 1st 2021. For more information click here.  
  • Please visit our Brexit Hub exporting page for the latest guidance on organic exports to NI, the EU and Non-EU countries. If you are a producer directly exporting to NI or the EU please email coi@soilassociation.org with details, you may be required to provide yield information before you can export.

Labelling

For changes to labelling, please view our labelling pages.

 

Exporting from the UK

New export rules came into force from 1st January 2021

Importing into the UK

New import rules came into effect on 1st January 2021

Brexit and organic standards

What's the same?

The Soil Association organic standards continue to maintain our existing high standards post-Brexit. 

All UK certifiers continue to certify UK organic businesses for UK trade.

All issued certificates with a 2021 expiry date remain valid in the UK. Read more on certificate validity since January 1st 2021.

What’s changed?

New UK organic food & farming statutory instruments have now been passed into law, ready to become regulation after Brexit. In anticipation of continued access to EU market these will remain closely aligned with existing EC organic regulations.

Labelling

New labelling requirements came into effect on the 1st January 2021

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