We have to look for small rays of light in all the Brexit gloom and here at least is one. We’ve been told by APHA that, despite a review, it will not be increasing its fees until October 2022.

Plants, plant products and other objects entering Great Britain from the EU will be subject to import controls which are being phased in over six months and therefore fees will be payable.

Here’s a quick summary we’ve received from APHA on fees to help businesses which import plants – which might be retailers who buy direct from EU suppliers – to help you to get ready.

From 1st January 2021, there will be the requirement for pre-notification and phytosanitary certificates for plants, plant products and other objects that pose the greatest potential risk to GB biosecurity and which are already subject to regulation within the EU (the high-priority list can be downloaded here). (Put basically aquatic plants are counted as plants for planting.) They will also be subject to import checks at Places of Destination. The frequency of identity and physical checks will vary depending on the level of risk associated with each commodity and as such, fees for these checks will be adjusted and apply from 1st April. All the high-priority goods will be subject to 100% documentary checks. This is described in here. To note: there will be no costs to register your Place of Destination with the competent authority.

From 1st April 2021, the requirement for pre-notification and phytosanitary certificates will be extended to include all regulated plants, plant products and other objects. A list of goods that will require pre-notification can be found on gov.uk.  Additionally, from 1st April 2021, the identity import check will be aligned to the frequency of physical checks for EU and Rest of World (RoW) goods. This will reduce the identity check fee for commodities subject to lower frequencies of physical checks. This is also described here.

From 1st July 2021, an increased number of physical checks will be carried out.

In order to facilitate the charges, the current documentary and identity fee will be split to allow reduced identity check fees to apply. The current fee is £10.51 for combined documentary and identity checks. This will be split to become £5.25 for documentary checks and £5.25 for identity checks.

Further guidance on importing plants at the end of the Transition Period can be found here and here.

These services are subject to fees and charges. Details of the fees applicable can be found here.

Flow chart on imports

This document (which can be found on the Gov.UK Plant Health Portal) is a flow chart of the actions needed to be taken to import plants post transition by EU exporters and GB importers.