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Last checked: 03/09/2020

Taking animal products, food or plants with you

Affected by Brexit?

Carrying animal products, food or plants in the EU

If you are travelling in the EU you can carry meat or dairy products with you as long as they are for your own personal consumption.  This also applies to plants or plant products, such as cut flowers, fruit or vegetables as long as they have been grown in an EU country and are free from pests or disease.

In this context, EU includes the 27 EU countries, Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland, and the UK.

These rules also apply when you carry meat, dairy or plant products in your luggage, or if you order these items online or have them sent by mail.

In cases of localised animal disease or pest outbreaks restrictions may apply to the type and amount of products you are allowed to carry.

Special rules for the Faroe Islands and Greenland

If you are travelling from the Faroe Islands or Greenland, you are allowed to bring small quantities of meat and dairy products for personal consumption. There are no quantity restrictions for fish or fish products.

Product Amount per person Additional restrictions

Meat or meat products

10 kg

None

Dairy or dairy products

10 kg

None

Honey, eggs and egg products

10 kg

None

Snails

10 kg

None

Live bivalves (oysters, mussels)

10 kg

None

Exceptions – baby milk (powdered) and food, food for medical reasons, special pet feed

You can bring a limited amount (less than 10 kg) of powdered baby milk, baby food, foods required for medical reasons, or special pet feed as long as the:

Rules when travelling from a non-EU country

If you travel to the EU from a non-EU country, you are not allowed to bring any meat or dairy products with you.  You can however bring a limited quantity of fruit and vegetables as well as eggs, egg products and honey.  Restricted quantities of fish or fish products are also allowed.

Product Amount per person Additional restrictions

Eviscerated fresh fishery products, or prepared or processed fishery products

20 kg or 1 fish (whichever weighs most)

Fishery products from the Faroe Islands or Greenland

Goods, other than plants for planting and other than fishery products, coming from the Faroe Islands or Greenland 

Their combined quantity does not exceed the weight limit of 10 kg

Plants or plant products including cut flowers

 

A phytosanitary (plant health) certificate is required attesting that the product is free from certain specific pests

Powdered infant milk, infant food and special foods required for medical reasons

No more than 2 kg
  • do not require refrigeration before opening
  • are packaged proprietary brand products for direct sale to the final consumer
  • that the packaging is unbroken unless in current use

Pet food required for health-related reasons

No more than 2 kg
  • are intended for the pet accompanying the passenger
  • are shelf-stable (do not require refrigeration)
  • are packaged proprietary brand products for direct sale to the final consumer
  • that the packaging is unbroken unless in current use
Products other than  those described above which do not contain meat or milk (e.g. honey) 2kg

None

Checks when entering the EU

When arriving in the EU you may have to undergo official controls by the authorities. If you are carrying any meat or dairy products, which you have not declared they will be confiscated and destroyed, you may also be fined or face criminal prosecution.

Other animal derived products and plants

You may carry animal derived products - when you are travelling in the EU. However, most EU countries have strict rules on carrying endangered animals or plants or products derived from them, and in some cases, you may need a permit. For example, you may only carry 125g of sturgeon caviar; you will need a permit if you can more than this amount.

To find out about a specific species, you should always check the EU wildlife trade reference database. You can also contact the CITES authority in your country to find out if the species you want to travel with needs a permit.

FAQs

EU legislation

Need more information on rules in a specific country?

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