Guidance

Importing live animals or animal products from non-EU countries: general licences and authorisations

List of general licences and authorisations which allow certain animals and products of animal origin to be imported into Great Britain.

Certain animals and products of animal origin that are not covered by European Union legislation or where EU legislation states that the animal or product must be authorised, require an general import licence or authorisation before they can be imported into Great Britain.

Read our guidance on general licences.

If the general licence or authorisation you need is listed below, you don’t have to apply, but you must make sure you follow the conditions in the published licence. If there’s no general licence or authorisation for the commodity you wish to import, you must apply for a specific licence or authorisation.

Genetic material

This is for semen, ova and embryos of livestock and equine species entering England from the Channel Islands, Northern Ireland, Isle of Man, or countries outside the EU (known as “third countries”).

Live animals

These general licences cover domestic and non-domestic livestock (cattle, pigs, sheep, goats), poultry, birds and equidae (horses, ponies, donkeys) entering England from the Channel Islands, Northern Ireland, Isle of Man or countries outside the EU.

Captive birds

Cattle

Sheep and goats

Poultry

Pigs

Products for human consumption

These general licences cover animal products entering England from EU and non-EU countries.

Products not for human consumption

These general licences cover animal by-products not for human consumption entering England from EU and non-EU countries (known as “third countries”).

Research and diagnostic samples, trade samples and display items

Import conditions for research and diagnostic samples, trade samples and display items are provided for in the animal by-product legislation. They must be authorised before they are imported.

Some general licences and authorisations may need to be read together with a separate amendment notice, listed alongside it in the list below.

Research and diagnostic samples, trade samples and display items coming from other member states do not need to be licenced or authorised, but must comply with EU rules on animal by-products.

You may wish to include a copy of the facilitation letter with any consignments from EU countries.

Research and diagnostic samples

Heat treated animal products

Other products