The whole business of exporting animal products has become increasingly complicated in recent years as traceability and provenance have become paramount; each destination country can have its own set of unique requirements that need to be met and certified. We offer free advice to assist you meet such criteria, navigate the application process and export your product worldwide.
Export Health Certificates
An Export Health Certificate (EHC) is an official document that confirms your export meets the health requirements of the destination country. Each EHC must be certified by an Official Veterinarian (OV) – a person authorised by the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) to carry out animal product export certification.
Remember that a completed EHC must be included for each type of animal or animal product you’re exporting from the UK and to get your forms from the www.gov.uk website to ensure that they’re up to date.
- Find the relevant EHC from the www.gov.uk website.
- Download and complete both the EHC and the accompanying application form (the EXA document) and any other supplementary information specified in the guidance notes.
- Email the documents to the Processing Team at APHA.
- The application will be processed and the certificates will be sent out to the OV specified on the application form.
- The OV reviews the form and contacts the exporter to inspect the products. They will review any supporting documentation and stamp the EHC.
- The original certificate is returned to the exporter and copies are sent to APHA.
Below are brief notes on the major export markets; to hear more about the process for each country and product give Dave a call or send us a message.
Historically, the UK dairy industry has relied on exports, predominantly to the EU, as a means of clearing excess stock not required for the domestic market though the UK is a net importer for most dairy products, with the majority coming from the EU.
The EU is the main destination for UK sheep meat exports, accounting for an average of 89% of total exports between 2013 and 2017. These figures are similar to the exports of dairy products and beef and other bovine products, with 91% and 82% going to the EU respectively.
Due to the considerable uncertainty regarding the UK’s future trading relationship with the EU, potential tariffs imposed due to a No Deal Brexit could destroy any price competitiveness enjoyed in the export market.
The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHBD) provide government guidance, FAQs up-to-date analysis on Brexit: www.ahdb.org.uk/brexit
The United States has the biggest economy in the world and the third largest population. Despite having an overall surplus of agricultural products, the country is a large importer of meat and dairy, mainly from Canada and Mexico.
Currently, the UK has access for fresh/frozen pork and dairy but should other red meat categories open up, the US could be a valuable market.
There isn’t much recognition of British produce in the US, with less than a quarter having actively bought British food. The majority of these purchases were for special occasions, with only 3% buying for everyday meals (AHDB/ICM). US consumers are strong advocates of domestic products, with over three-quarters of them choosing the USA as the country they would associate with high-quality for meat and vegetables.
Having said this, there is a growing trend towards more natural and authentic dairy products, which could lead consumers away from ‘American cheese’, which is often viewed as highly processed.
With 4.5 billion people living in Asia – including over 1.4 billion in China alone – rising levels of disposable income and a growing appetite for meat, dairy and potatoes, there’s an abundance of opportunities for exporters.
China is the world’s most populous country, the fourth largest country in the world and the second biggest economy. It is the largest global importer of dairy products and the growing middle class in the country have been introducing more dairy into their diet. In August 2018, a dairy trade deal between the UK and China, estimated to be worth £240 million over the following five years, was agreed. It allows the UK to export dairy products that have been made with dairy ingredients sourced from third countries in an agreement designed to give more flexibility for UK dairy processors.
China lifted its ban on British beef exports last year with the signing of the UK-China Beef Protocol, a vital first step in unlocking this major market; it is growing to be an important meat export market despite its recent economic slowdown in 2015-6 and the UK is currently working to further open Asian markets for red meat products.
The China-Britain Business Council can support companies throughout the process of entering the market and growing their business in China: www.cbbc.org