Products Not of Animal Origin (non-POAO)

Guidance on importing high-risk feed and food products of non-animal origin

Feed and food products of non-animal origin are any products that do not contain any ingredients derived from animals or animal products e.g. fruits, vegetables, nuts, confectionary, cereals, herbs, spices, etc.

Most products of non-animal origin may enter through any port, although importers should contact the port or the local authority in whose area the port is situated to check that the port has the necessary facilities in place to handle food. 

The legislation controlling non-POAO imported from non EU countries into the UK is Regulation 2017/625 which is implemented in Scotland by the Official Feed and Food Controls (Scotland) Regulations 2009 (as amended).

In general terms official controls on such products will be carried out regularly by the Local Authority Port Health team, on a risk assessed basis and when carried out will include documentary check as well as identity and physical checks, as appropriate.

Imports of some specific feed and food of non-animal origin, from certain non-EU countries, which are legally designated to be high-risk can only enter the UK through specific ports and airports approved as Border Inspection Posts (BCPs) where additional specified official controls will be carried out.  

A high-risk product is feed or food that is either a known, or an emerging risk to public health.  This may be due to the presence of pathogens, contaminants and toxins including aflatoxins. 

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/1793 (as amended) imposes temporary increase of official controls, special measures and emergency measures governing the entry into the European Union of certain products of non-animal origin from certain third countries implementing Regulations (EU) 2017/625 and (EC) No 178/2002.

This regulation also lists the products, their country of origin and the frequency of checks that must be carried out.

A list of BCPs in the UK is available here.

Abbreviations and specifications applicable to the categories of animals and goods for which BCPs are designated can be found at Annex II of Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/1014

TRACES NT

TRACES NT has been developed by the EU for notifying imports of such products from outside the EU.  Importers should register for TRACES NT by following the following link:

Using TRACES NT, importers must complete a Common Health Entry Document (CHED). There are different categories of CHED which can be used, depending on the nature of the consignment being imported. However, a CHED-D must be used  for consignments of high-risk food and feed of non-animal origin.

The purpose of the CHED serves several purposes including:

  • Providing prior notification to the competent authorities responsible for undertaking official controls at the BCP of arrival of those consignments
  • Allowing the competent authorities at the BCP to record the outcome of official controls performed
  • Allowing actions the competent authorities take, including any follow-up measures taken regarding the consignment after a decision has been taken, to be recorded.

The CHED-D replaced the CED (Common Entry Document) established by Commission Regulation (EC) 669/2009. 

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