On 24 December 2020, the European Union and the United Kingdom reached an agreement in principle on the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement. Content on the site is being monitored to reflect this and the changes.
Under the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland there are to be no tariffs or Customs controls on the island of Ireland, regardless of the outcome of the EU-UK Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations. Goods moving between Northern Ireland and the rest of the EU will also continue to move freely. Great Britain (GB) will be outside the EU Single Market and Customs Union.
Content on the site is being monitored to reflect the new Trade Agreement and any changes to the content below will be updated in the coming days
· Food labelling (address of the Food Business Operator).
· Country of Origin labelling.
· Nutrition-related labelling.
· Organic product logo.
· Chemicals classification, labelling and packaging.
Food Labelling – Address of the Food Business Operator
Goods sold in Northern Ireland will continue to follow EU rules for food labelling. Pre-packaged food that is placed on the market in the EU or sold in Northern Ireland, must have the EU or Northern Ireland address of the food business operator or importer on its packaging.
Companies selling pre-packaged food to GB can continue to use an EU, GB or Northern Ireland address for the food business operator until 30 September 2022. From 1 October 2022, a UK address will be required for the food business operator or importer.
Country of Origin Labels
Food from GB must not be labelled as ‘origin EU’. However, food from Northern Ireland can continue to use ‘origin EU’. Where EU law requires the Member State origin on the product, food from Northern Ireland should be labelled as ‘UK(NI)’ or ‘United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)’. Where EU law does not require an EU Member State to be indicated, food from and sold in NI can continue to use ‘origin EU’ or ‘origin UK’.
Food from Northern Ireland which is sold in GB may be labelled ‘UK(NI)’, ‘United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)’ or ‘UK’. GB has also said that food from and sold in GB can be labelled as ‘origin EU’ until 30 September 2022. There are particular rules for beef & veal, eggs, fruit & vegetables, honey blends, minced meat and olive oils – available here.
Organic Product Logo
Ireland will remain a member of the EU, with food producers in Ireland continuing to use the EU organic logo.
From January 2021, goods from GB will not be able to be exported as organic food or feed to the EU, unless the control body is authorised by the EU to certify UK goods for EU export or if the EU and UK agree an equivalency deal (to recognise each other’s standards) as part of the ongoing trade negotiations.
GB businesses can still export their products using non-organic labelling if they meet all other marketing standards and if organic labelling is removed or covered.
Great Britain will recognise the EU as equivalent for the purpose of trade in organics until 31 December 2021 (i.e. organic products from Ireland can continue to enter GB until this date).
Organic products placed on the market in Northern Ireland will need to comply with EU regulations. Organic products moving from Northern Ireland to the EU will be treated as Single Market goods.
However, organic products shipped from GB to Northern Ireland will be treated as imported organic products and will have to comply with EU organic product import rules.
Control bodies established in Northern Ireland will continue to be considered as control bodies established in an EU Member State and may provide certification.
EU law on food composition, ingredients and limits for contaminants/residues applies to all food placed on the EU market – no matter where it was produced.
EU legislation relating to nutrition-related labelling will apply in Northern Ireland.
Trade from Northern Ireland to GB can continue to take place as it does now without new nutrition-related labelling restrictions.
GOV.UK guidance here.
Chemicals Classification, Labelling and Packaging
Chemicals (substances or mixtures) placed on the market in Northern Ireland must continue to comply with the EU Chemicals Classification, Labelling and Packaging Regulation .
Where notification is required of the hazard classification and labelling of substances placed on the Northern Ireland market, businesses in Northern Ireland should do so to through the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA).
Downstream users and distributors in Northern Ireland who are supplied by businesses in the EU/EEA won’t face new requirements.
For chemicals traded from GB to Northern Ireland, the responsibility for the classification, labelling and packaging of chemicals will rest with the Northern Ireland-based business that places the chemical on the Northern Ireland market, even if it is currently a downstream user or distributor.