Defra has removed the set requirement for a three-day pre-notification period when importing plants and plant products from the EU in the event of a ‘no-deal’, following concerns raised by the NFU.
The Government had originally set a time limit of three days on the pre-notification of goods requiring a phytosanitary certificate entering the UK if a ‘no-deal’ comes to pass, but following concerns raised by NFU grower members that this could add a day or more to the door-to-door time it takes to get plant material from EU suppliers to UK businesses, it has now updated guidance to simply require pre-notification in advance of entry.
However, the three-day pre-notification period will remain in legislation to act as a fall back should biosecurity concerns arise regarding either specific trades or EU imports more generally.
The new guidance would only apply to imports from the EU in the event of a ‘no deal’. Imports from third countries, entering the UK directly or transiting through the EU, would still require a three-day pre-notification period or four hours if arriving by air.