We are rapidly approaching the end of this comprehensive presentation of the buyers requirements for the European Union’s and EFTA’s fish and seafood market, tackling on the following three installments of this multi-part article the “sine qua non” category of the said requirements. The strict conformity to the this “sine qua non” category of requirements, as the name of this category suggests, guarantees only the acceptance of your product on the wine distribution market, not the actual commercial success of the product.
For the European Union’s fish and seafood market, the most important “sine qua non” requirement is the fact that your country must be on the list of EU-approved countries in order for you to export fish to the EU market. The approval is granted based on equivalence of public health and control systems, in other words, your country must be able to ensure that the fishery products exported meet the strict EU health requirements. If your country has been approved, it also has a competent authority in place which further approves establishments and factory vessels. That is part of the control system: Your establishment must be approved in order for you to be able to export to the EU. Approved establishments receive a unique identification code, usually referred to as “EU number”.
The EU Buyer Requirements for Fishery products study recently compiled for the CBI Market Information Database by CREM B.V. states, as considerations for action regarding this unique requirement, the following: “In order to become an approved country, the national authority submits a formal request to the Directorate-General for Health and Consumer Protection of the European Commission. For your establishment to get approved, your business must be inspected by the competent authority of your country and be found to meet EU safety requirements. Only the national authorities of your country can put forward your establishment for EU approval. If your establishment has not been approved yet, you can contact your national authorities for further proceedings.”
Please consult Annex One on our Best Wine Importers blog for additional legal information regarding this important topic. Furthermore, our next two installments in this series will tackle other “sine qua non” requirements such as catch certificate, health certificates as a official guarantee, food safety issues regarding contaminants and microbiological contamination, as well as the labeling requirements. Stay tuned.
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