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Latest DEFRA Resources for EU Exit (30 September)

The UK will leave the EU on 31 October. Agri-Food businesses should ensure that they are prepared for EU Exit and continue to visit GOV.UK for guidance. Specific guidance for food and drink businesses is available on the Food and Drink GOV.UK landing page, including advice for importers and exporters of animal products, and advice about food labelling, tariffs, data protection and more.

We’ve collated key information from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ (DEFRA) shareable resources, for week commencing 23rd September 2019.

1. Events and webinars to help you prepare for Brexit

There are several opportunities to access support and guidance to help you prepare for Brexit.

Brexit Business Readiness Events

The Government is arranging Brexit Business Readiness Events across the UK to help you prepare, starting Monday 16 September. Join us at a free event in your area to meet government advisers and to find out what actions your business needs to take to prepare.

The events will combine a keynote address, interactive support, advice stands and in-depth sessions led by subject matter experts. They will provide you with specific business-focused advice and help.

Register to attend an event at:

DIT Get ready for Brexit business-facing workshops

As part of ongoing support for businesses, the Department for International Trade are running a series of events to help exporters to get ready for Brexit on 31 October. These events will be particularly useful for businesses who are exporting to the EU.

You’ll leave the event with a personalised action plan to prepare your business for Brexit. DIT will talk about impact to supply chains, changes to regulations and contracts, where to find tariff information, and what you might need to speak to customers and employees about, among a range of other topics.

See dates, locations and sign up – limited registration place available.

HMRC Getting ready for Brexit webinars

HMRC are running a number of webinars for UK businesses involved in the movement of goods between the EU and the UK.

Find out what you need to know to keep importing and exporting by signing up for a webinar.

2. New and updated guidance

Trade of plants and plant products – changes to imports of plant and plant products from the EU in a no deal (updated 30th September)

Importing plants and plant products – The majority of plants and plant products imported from the EU will continue to enter the UK freely, without any plant health controls, as currently. Only those plants and plant products currently managed under the EU plant passport regime will be controlled and will require a Phytosanitary Certificate issued in the country of export (or re-export). The importer or the importer’s agent would need to inform the relevant plant health authority in the UK before the consignment arrives. If you are not sure whether your consignment needs plant passports, please contact APHA.

Exporting plants and plant products – The process for sending controlled plants and plant products to the EU would be the same as the current process for sending them to third countries.

For further information about moving plants and plant products after Brexit, visit GOV.UK.

A reminder for importers of animals and products of animal origin – Get ready for Brexit: Register for IPAFFS now

If you import animals and animal products into the UK, you can continue to do so after Brexit but you will need to use a new process to notify the UK authorities.

If we leave the EU without a deal on 31st October, you will no longer be able to use TRACES and will instead need to use the Import of products, animals, food and feed system (IPAFFS) for imports from countries outside the European Union.

You and your business can get ready for Brexit by getting setup with access to IPAFFS:

  • If you have already registered for IPAFFS, please check you have your gateway ID and your password.
  • If you haven’t registered yet, please head to, read the guidance and register.

IPAFFS is currently only for Third Country Imports (countries outside the European Union). Information about what you will need to do for EU Imports will follow later this month.

If you need any assistance registering, you can contact the APHA Service Desk by phone on 03300 416 999 or at

3. News and resources

HMRC grants

Following the recent £16 million investment to provide funding towards training and IT costs for businesses that complete customs declarations, HMRC has announced that it will provide a further £10 million in grants for customs agents and intermediaries to build capacity in managing customs declarations.

Businesses that will benefit from the funding are encouraged to apply early, as applications will close once all the funding has been allocated, and by 31 January 2020 at the latest. Those that applied for the first and second wave may apply again as part of this new wave of grants. Please find more information here.

The UK Government’s proposal to the EU for a new Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, presented on 2 October 2019

The Prime Minister wrote to Donald Tusk on 19 August 2019 setting out the UK’s position on the renegotiation of the Withdrawal Agreement, as well as this government’s desired final destination for a long-term relationship with the EU.

Since then, the government has pursued discussions with the European Union on alternatives to the previous Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, the so-called ‘backstop’.

Please find here a letter to the President of the European Commission and an accompanying explanatory note setting out the government’s proposal for a new Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland.

Tariffs and trade agreements

A new information leaflet outlining the basic principles of tariffs and trade agreements and listing key steps agri-food businesses that import/export should take to prepare for a no deal Brexit, has been released. You can download it here.

Food and drink showcase Dropbox with shareable resources

Click here to access the files:

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