The private attestation for shelf-stable composite products requires the product – or the dairy and egg components within it - to have undergone specific heat treatment. As currently drafted, the EU model document restricts the treatment of the dairy element of the product to UHT or sterilisation.
The European Commission has confirmed it is amending the animal health regulation to allow businesses to use a private attestation to export shelf-stable composite products containing dairy that has not undergone UHT or sterilisation, so long as the dairy product originates and is processed in a third country listed for the export of dairy to the EU, such as GB.
As the legislative amendments will not be in place by 21 April 2021 when the new Regulation applies the Commission has agreed an interim arrangement.
Shelf stable composite products dispatched from GB to the EU, which contain no meat but do contain dairy products processed in the UK (or another similarly listed third country) or the EU, do not require any specific treatment to use the private attestation document.
The importer, completing the private attestation, may delete Point 10 of Part II of the attestation (which relates to the dairy heat treatment requirement) if:
- dairy products are listed as ingredients in point 4 of Part II of the attestation and;
- the country code inserted in box 1.7 of Part I of the attestation, is that of a third country listed for the export of dairy products to the EU without risk mitigating treatment (such as GB).
The establishment of origin of the dairy product, indicated in point 5 of the attestation, is in a third country listed for the export of dairy products to the EU without risk mitigating treatment (such as GB, or the EU, or Northern Ireland).
Dairy Product from non UK or EU sources
If the country of the establishment of origin of the dairy product is not listed for the export of dairy products to the EU at all, Point 10 of the attestation cannot be amended and UHT or sterilisation is required.
If the country of establishment of origin of the dairy product is one listed only for the export to the EU of dairy products that are subject to risk mitigating treatment (e.g. Argentina) Point 10 of the attestation cannot be struck through. Instead, the reference in Point 10 to ‘Column B’ can be amended to read ‘Column A’. This broadens the range of heat treatments that the product can have been subject to and still utilise the private attestation document, although it does not remove the need for heat treatment altogether, as is the case for GB origin product.
More details will be made available in the relevant guidance documentation on the Government's website at: EHC Form Finder.
To summarise, from April 21st 2021 the following rules will apply to composite products:
- Non-shelf stable composite products and any composite products containing meat (aside from gelatine, collagen and highly refined products) will require a new EHC
- Shelf-stable composite products not containing meat will require a new document – a private attestation – signed by the EU importer. Certain shelf stable composite products, such as confectionery and breads, are exempt from veterinary checks at a Border Control Post.
If your composite product already requires an EHC, you will be able to carry on using the current EHC until August or choose to use the new documentation.
If your product does not currently require an EHC, you must follow the new rules from April 21st.
For live animals, germinal products and other products of animal origin you will be able to continue using existing EHCs until August 2021.
The Animal Health Regulations will apply in Northern Ireland (NI). Traders moving goods from Great Britain (GB) to Northern Ireland will need to ensure that they meet the new requirements too.
Businesses on the Authorised Trader list moving goods from GB to NI will not be required to complete new composites EHCs or private attestations until the relevant phase of compliance comes into effect from 1 Oct 2021. Instead, their STAMNI (Scheme for Temporary Agri-food Movements to Northern Ireland) declarations will meet these requirements in the meantime, in line with the movement criteria.
All goods moved by Authorised Traders from GB to NI must comply with the regulatory requirements for composite products.
Links to some of the key summaries from gov.uk are on the FDEA Brexit page - click here to view and download the private attestation and ECH templates