Export for organic businesses after Brexit
After the end of the transition period, a number of things will change for organic farmers and growers, manufacturers and traders exporting to the EU.
As the UK’s organic experts and the largest dedicated food and farming charity, we have compiled some key export information for organic businesses.
We are here to support you in this period of change.
Exporting to the EU after Brexit
A deal means that all organic exports from the UK to the EU will continue unaffected until the end of the transition period at the end of the 2020. After 31st December 2020, export to the EC and other EC approved countries may be interrupted unless organic equivalency arrangements have been clarified as part of implementation of the deal.
If equivalency between the UK and EU is not established by the end of 2020, here’s what will need to happen for trading to resume:
Organic certifiers need to be approved by the EU1
The UK organic certification system will no longer be recognised by the EU, so UK certifiers (e.g. Soil Association Certification) must obtain European Commission (EC) approval under regulation EC1235/2008. This will be needed before their licensees can export from the UK, or a third country, to the EU.
All certifications along the UK supply chain will need to be issued by a certifier who holds approval under EC1235/2008 for the relevant product category. Soil Association Certification have applied to extend existing EC1235/2008 approval to include the UK. All other UK organic certifiers are also understood to be progressing approval. We expect to be informed of approval by the end of October 2020.
From 2021, the UK is expected to work to an organic regulation based on the current EU organic regulation (EC834/2007). It is anticipated that UK certifiers will continue to apply the existing EC regulation (834) for minimum of three years.
Register to trade with the EU
The following information applies to farmers and growers, manufacturers and traders certified by Soil Association. If you are planning to export to the EU after the end of the transition period, you will need make sure all the products you are planning on exporting are on your trading schedule. If you are licensed by another Certification Body, get in touch with them directly.
Organic licenses adapted
Let your Certification Officer know you’ve registered to trade and they will make the necessary minor changes to your certificate and trading schedule to allow your ongoing access to the EU organic market after December 2020.
Obtain a customs ID
All businesses trading with the EU after Brexit who are VAT registered will start to be enrolled into Economic Operator Registration and Identification (EORI) by HMRC.
Changes to trading documents and consignment approval
Unless equivalency arrangements agreed in 2020 indicate otherwise, for all goods arriving in the EU after the end of the transition period, exporters will need to register using the TRACES NT portal. On the TRACESNT portal you should be able to register as either a ‘producer’ or ‘exporter’, or both if that applies to your business.
There may also be some changes for the company importing the goods into the EU. Unless equivalence arrangements indicate otherwise, they will have to ensure their organic certification covers them for importing and be registered on TRACESNT as importers. They will also need to notify the port authority in the country the goods are clearing that they have an organic shipment arriving.
Details of requirement for products exporter from Northern Ireland remain unclear at this time. We recommend contacting email@example.com for updates.
Exporting beyond the EU after Brexit
Exporting goods worldwide will depend on:
- The requirements of the country you export to
- If the UK has a trade deal in place with them at the end of the implementation period.
- What future trade deals look like
There will be no significant changes to current acceptance of organic products during the transition period.
For the majority of the 13 nations detailed in Annex III of the EC 834 regulation (approved third countries) agreements are in place to ensure product will be in place for the duration of the transition period. After the 31st December 2020, where equivalency has not been agreed between the UK and non-EU governments, different exporting rules may apply.
Note: Taiwan is considered an exception and has not recognised EU (UK) organic status since May 2020. Taiwan now requires product to be approved to the organic standards of The Taiwanese Agriculture and Food Agency (AFA)
For all exports to the non-EU after 31st December 2020, we advise checking with organic authority in the export market whether labels/certification will be accepted.
DIT have launched a new tool for exporters to help businesses moving goods from the UK to the rest of the world. Find information here covering rules and restrictions, tax and duty rates, and documents required.
Talk to us
As the organic experts in the UK we provide a wealth of free information and guidance to our organic licensees.
If you can’t find what you’re looking for on these pages, please get in touch with your Certification Officer or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- (1) This relates to regulation EC 1235/2008