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HMRC internal manual

Beer Guidance

HM Revenue & Customs
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Small brewery beer: Imports

When imported into the UK, beer produced by small breweries in other Member States or in countries outside the EU are eligible for reduced rates of duty provided they meet the UK’s small brewery beer requirements.

Importers, whether they are breweries, Excise Warehouses, Registered Consignees or Temporary Consignees must establish in advance that the beer is eligible.

Further details on import documentation and certificate (confirming that the beer is small brewery beer) can be found in paragraphs 8.22 and 8.23 of Notice 226. If no certificate accompanies the beer, it cannot be small brewery beer and the standard rate of duty must be applied.


Imports from other EU Member States - All EU movements in duty suspension must be through EMCS. The certificate that beer is ‘small brewery beer’ is required on the Electronic Administrative Document - eAD. Further information on EMCS and receipts from other EU Member States can be found in Notice 197

Imports from outside the EU - All imports from outside the EU into the UK must be through EMCS. A registered consignor (which can be the import agent at the place of importation or the receiving registered brewer) must start the movement to the registered premises on EMCS. Further information on import procedures from outside the EU can be found in paragraph 8.23 of Notice 226 and Notice 197.