The UK government has published a revised version of the Border Operating Model (BOM), which explains how border changes will be implemented.
The major change relevant to food and drink traders is associated with the introduction of physical and ID checks on incoming agri-food shipments from the EU (Phase 3 of the BOM).
Previously, this was planned to be completed from July 2021 – in the new BOM, the work will be phased-in over a longer period, as follows:
- 1 Jul 2022 –
- All remaining regulated animal by-products
- All remaining HRFNAO 1
- All plants and plant products
- All meat and meat products
- 1 Sep 2022 –
- 1 Nov 2022 –
- All remaining POAO 2
- All fish and fish products
- All remaining composite products
Note that this change applies to SPS procedures only, not to customs procedures, which will be applied according to the previous schedule.
The major item outstanding is the full list of which BCPs 3 will handle each product type. This is vital information, since it allows transport planners to design routes, but a final list is now not expected until January 2022.
Businesses bringing agri-food goods to the UK will no doubt welcome extra time to prepare for change.
ONS data suggests that, although trade between the UK and EU continues, an increasing number of participants report challenges, not withstanding the various easements in place.
This data refers to all trade, not agri-food specifically, but agri-food businesses are likely to experience particular difficulty.
HRFNAO = High Risk Food, Not Of Animal Origin (eg: nuts sourced from specific countries) 2
POAO = Products Of Animal Origin 3
BCP = Border Control Post
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