Importing food

Organic produce

How you import organic food depends on which country you are importing it from.

Imports from the EU

You can import organic produce from the EU as long as your supplier is registered with an EU organic certification body.

An organic certification body is an independent organisation that has standards for its members that meet or exceed government regulations.

Imports from outside the EU

You can import certain organic products from countries that are covered under ‘equivalence agreements’ - this means they have no import restrictions.

The countries that have equivalence agreements with the UK are:

  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Costa Rica
  • India
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • New Zealand
  • Switzerland

Not all products will be covered by equivalence agreements. Call the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) helpline if you are unsure whether a product is covered by an agreement.

Defra Helpline
Telephone: 08459 335 577
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For countries not covered by equivalence agreements, you must:

  • apply for approval from Defra before importing
  • be registered with an EU Organic Certification Body
  • have a Certificate of Inspection for the food you want to import