Export Health Certificates (EHC) may be required by food manufacturers/exporters who wish to export food of an animal origin to countries outside of the European Community (EC), commonly referred to as third countries.
These certificates confirm that a specific business complies with all relevant legislation and the food produced is without risk to health.
Dependent on the destination importing country and the commodity type an EHC may have to be sourced from the Animal Plant Health Agency (APHA) or East Riding of Yorkshire Council, depending what is being exported and to where. To determine this, please contact the APHA by:
Telephone: 01228 403600 Option 2, or visit their website:
GOV.UK - Export Health Certificates (external website)
If a certificate is being issued from the APHA this is likely to be signed by a vet (commonly for meat and dairy products), although fishery products and certain composite products may be certified by a local authority EHO.
The APHA may also inform you there is an EHC template in place; depending on where the food is being exported to this may require you to complete and submit an application form to the APHA or where appropriate to contact East Riding Council who can source and issue this. When submitting an application form to the APHA, East Riding Council should also be contacted to inform them of the planned export.
In some cases, there will not be an EHC template, where this occurs the council can assist with the production of a none-template EHC.
In all cases, the council advises the relevant countries embassy or consulate, food authority, as well as the importer, be liaised with by the food manufacturers/exporters to find out about any import conditions and if the certificate meets the stipulated requirements.
The typical information required for the application which will be displayed on the certificate is as follows:
- Minimum durability
- Storage conditions
- Approval number
- Country of origin
- Date of production
- Batch number.
It must be noted, however, that it is the exporter's responsibility to ensure that the destination country's requirements are met.
Once the applicable certificate has been arranged, East Riding of Yorkshire Council will then contact the business to arrange a suitable time and date to view the consignment in order to undertake relevant checks and view any associated documents such as HACCP monitoring records and laboratory test reports, etcetera. Once this has been completed, the certificate will be issued.