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Raw milk and dairy products

The European Union (EU) establishes rules applying to imports of milk and dairy products intended for human consumption. These rules govern only the introduction of products from third countries into EU territory.

ACT

Commission Regulation (EU) No 605/2010 of 2 July 2010 laying down animal and public health and veterinary certification conditions for the introduction into the European Union of raw milk and dairy products intended for human consumption [See amending act(s)].

SUMMARY

Milk and dairy products which are imported into the European Union (EU) must meet animal and public health conditions, and also the requirements on certification as provided for by European legislation and the Agreements concluded with third countries.

Basic conditions

All third countries wishing to export milk and dairy products within the EU must be included on the list of countries authorised to export milk and dairy products which is laid down in this Regulation. Prior to inclusion on the list, the countries must undergo an inspection by the Commission’s Food and Veterinary Office (FVO) to demonstrate that they comply with fundamental animal and public health conditions.

Animal health conditions for imports of milk and dairy products are laid down in Directive 2002/99/EC. This Directive sets out the animal health rules governing the production, processing, distribution and introduction of products of animal origin for human consumption and establishes the animal health guarantees that are required for intra-Community trade in such products of animal origin. The health conditions for imports of milk and dairy products are laid down in Regulation (EC) Nos 852/2004 and 853/2004. These Regulations set out the general rules on the hygiene of foodstuffs and more specific hygiene rules applying to certain foods of animal origin.

Specific requirements

All countries wishing to export milk and dairy products to the EU must comply with specific requirements. These include, in particular, processing requirements imposed upon the manufacture of milk and dairy products. The required treatments are described in this Regulation. They are established according to the health status of the exporting third country. Imports of raw milk and raw milk-based dairy products are only authorised from third countries with a high health status. Countries whose health status is less favourable (for example those where animals are vaccinated against foot-and-mouth disease) may only export pasteurised milk and dairy products made from pasteurised milk.

For each third country or part thereof, specific processing requirements are defined according to the health situation. These requirements must be complied with when manufacturing milk and dairy products in order to reduce, in particular, the potential risks of animal diseases.

There is also a requirement that all establishments be approved for the production of milk and dairy products. The list of approved establishments is laid down in accordance with Article 12 of Regulation (EC) No 854/2004.

Certificates

Batches of raw milk and dairy products to be imported into EU territory must be accompanied by a health certificate issued by the official veterinarian of the exporting country. Health certificates for imports of raw milk and dairy products shall be established in accordance with Annex II, Part 2 of this Regulation.

However, it is possible to use electronic certification or other systems that have been approved at European level.

Transit and storage

Batches of raw milk and dairy products which are in transit or stored on EU territory must meet the basic conditions and specific requirements applying to imports of raw milk and dairy products. In addition, they must be accompanied by a health certificate in line with the model given in Annex II, Part 3 of this Regulation and certified as acceptable for transit or storage on the veterinary entry document signed by the official veterinarian at the border inspection post.

Inspections

Milk and dairy products entering the EU are inspected at a border inspection post (BIP). The list of BIPs is established in Commission Decision 2009/821/EC. Member States’ official veterinarians shall check that batches of raw milk and dairy products meet all of the requirements laid down in European legislation.

Veterinary checks are performed pursuant to Directive 97/78/EC laying down the principles governing the organisation of veterinary checks on products entering the Community from third countries.

REFERENCES

ActEntry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Regulation (EU) No 605/2010

30.7.2010

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OJ L 175 of 10.7.2010

Amending act(s)Entry into forceDeadline for transposition in the Member StatesOfficial Journal
Regulation (EU) No 914/2011

4.10.2011

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OJ L 237 of 14.9.2011

The successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EU) No 605/2011 have been incorporated into the original text. This consolidated version is for reference only.

Last updated: 14.11.2011
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