New Organic Equivalency Agreements with the United Kingdom

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Date

Date Published: 
January 11, 2021
As of January 1, 2021, the United Kingdom (UK) officially exited the European Union (EU), completing a long transition period known colloquially as "Brexit." Both the United States and Canada have signed an organic equivalency agreement with the UK (which includes England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland) effective January 1, 2021. For now, the UK will maintain the EU organic regulations for a one-year transitional period ending January 1, 2022. This will provide the organic industry time to adopt new UK organic regulations, ensuring smooth trade. 
 
The UK will utilize a new export document manually processed outside of the EU’s TRACES document system. The Great Britain Certificate of Inspection (COI) mirrors the COI used by the EU and needs to be signed by CCOF before the shipment leaves the United States. Organic shipments will be accepted by the local Port Health Authority (PHA) or Local Authority (LA) in the UK with a copy of the COI, but the original Great Britain COI must be presented and endorsed to PHA or LA within 10 working days for the consignment to be sold as organic. 
 
CCOF operations enrolled in the Global Market Access program for the EU will be considered compliant for the UK and may submit Great Britain COI requests to export@ccof.org. During the interim period, products exported to Northern Ireland will continue to require a COI processed through TRACES. All organic export documents are available at CCOF’s export certificate page.
 
For further information, email export@ccof.org or visit the USDA UK website.