Import of animals and animal products

Published by:
Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO
Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

Do you import living animals or animal products into the European Union? At Import Veterinary Online (in Dutch) of the Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (Nederlandse Voedsel en Warenautoriteit, NVWA) you can check if importing into the European Union is possible. You will also be informed on supplementary requirements of your veterinary products or live animals.

Border Control Post

If you import animals or animal products, they must enter the EU through an approved Border Control Post (BCP, Grenscontrolepost GCP, in Dutch) at ports and airports. NVWA will check the animals and animal products upon arrival. They do this in cooperation with Dutch Customs. This import inspection is not always mandatory (in Dutch). You can check the Dutch-language ALIM04 Definities Dier Product list (Definition of animals, animal groups and animal products list) to find out which category the animal or animal product is listed under, which regulations apply and if inspection is mandatory.

For foodstuffs that contain both plant products and processed animal products (composite products) rules apply as well.

Report the cargo

You will have to report the cargo (scroll down for English) at least 1 working day before arrival. For this purpose, you use a Common Health Entry Document, CHED (Gemeenschappelijk Gezondheidsdocument van Binnenkomst, GGB).

You can also register the cargo online. In that case, you must have a permit from the NVWA (in Dutch), have suitable software, and a connection to the government’s electronic Digipoort (in Dutch).

Registering cargo in LORI

For some animals and animal products there is a maximum number or amount that may be imported into the EU (quota). This applies for example to poultry (meat). In such cases you need an import certificate. To apply for an import certificate you have to be registered in the European LORI database at least 2 months before your application. Is your company based in the Netherlands? Then you register in the LORI database through the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO, in Dutch). You should also demonstrate the annual quantity of your imports into the EU (in Dutch). You can then apply for an import certificate to RVO.

Importing animals from the UK after Brexit

If you import animals or animal products from the United Kingdom, you will need to take extra measures.