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Regulated goods

From 1 July 2022, you must pre-notify imports of ‘regulated’ (Article 73) goods when instructed to do so  


From 1 July 2022 ‘regulated’ (Article 73) goods will be selected for inspection at a minimum 1% frequency, this includes some cut flowers, fruit, vegetables and seeds. Please note, this does not apply to regulated wood, wood products and bulk consignments of bark.

When you submit your customs import declaration, the UK customs IT system CHIEF/CDS will select 1% of consignments containing ‘regulated’ (Article 73) commodities, with an instruction to submit an IPAFFS notification. This avoids the need to pre-notify 100% of these consignments on IPAFFS. Declarations which are selected will return an Automatic Licence Verification Service (ALVS) generated message to the declarant that they must pre-notify on the IPAFFS service and be subject to phytosanitary (plant health) import checks. Customs clearance will be contingent on a release signal from IPAFFS (on completion of plant health checks.)

Importers new to the process of pre-notifying should register for and use IPAFFS. Otherwise please continue using PEACH until you are directed to move to IPAFFS during the course of 2022. To register to use the IPAFFS system traders will need to set up a Government Gateway account and create a Defra account for the IPAFFS service. A training video and further guidance is available on the IT Systems page. 

After completing your plant health pre-notification, your customs agent will need to amend your customs declaration to include your IPAFFS notification reference number. On CHIEF, this is in Box 44 following the country code and licence type CVD. On CDS, this is in the document identifier segment of DE 2/3 (Documents produced) following the country code and licence type CHD. In box 44 or DE 2/3, the CHED document code should still be used to reflect the commodity (plants and plant products) that you are importing to ensure successful tariff validation.

Failure to notify and share the notification reference number will delay your custom agent’s ability to complete the amendment of the declaration and could therefore delay the departure of your consignment.


‘Regulated’ (Article 73) Goods Pre-notification Process Map

 Process map for 1 July imports



Q. Why are you introducing this?

This measure is being introduced to provide risk-management data on the import of Article 73 goods (allowing for better targeting of risk-based import checks), to provide appropriate biosecurity safeguards and to monitor any changing risks. 100% of other regulated plant and plant product commodities need to be pre-notified before arriving in Great Britain.

Q. Will the 1% selection process work effectively?

The approach above has been successfully used for fruit and vegetable Marketing Standards requirements for many years, via PEACH and CHIEF, providing proof of concept for the selection process.

Q. How does this process relate to the requirements for PCs?

From 1 July 2022, Article 73 goods will require a PC when imported to GB.  For information on how to obtain a PC, please see A PC will be required regardless of whether you are instructed to pre-notify (where submission of the PC will be required.)PCs are a measure that protect GB biosecurity, and your goods could be held at the point of if they are not accompanied by the right documentation.

Q. What fees apply for pre-notification?

There are no fees associated with pre-notification of goods on IPAFFS.

Q. Why has this measure not been introduced before?

Currently, 1% of Article 73 goods arriving in Great Britain from RoW countries are inspected, using a bespoke process. Article 73 goods from the EU, Liechtenstein and Switzerland, will be subject to physical checks from 1 July 2022. From this date we will improve the process used to select Article 73 consignments for inspection, from all third countries. From 1 July 22, to align with other changes linked to the Transitional Provisions, we will use the UK customs IT system to select 1% of Article 73 goods. That 1% will need to be pre-notified and will then be subject to documentary, identity and physical checks. 

Q. Why are these measures proposed for GB and not to the whole of the UK?

Under the terms of the Northern Ireland Protocol, Northern Ireland “NI” will maintain alignment with EU Sanitary and Phytosanitary-related regulations. However, Great Britain and NI administrations will continue to work closely together on plant health issues and NI will continue to play a full and comprehensive role in technical and policy decisions affecting the UK as a whole.