Beer Tax / Duty when selling to foreign markets


I’m an adviser working with UKTI. I’ve spoken to a number of craft beer companies who would like to start exporting but are worried about the tax and duties situation when selling to foreign markets.

What advice would you give these companies, eg where can they get info or help with understanding the legal position on duties?


I would start by showing them or looking on the EU market access database. entering the tariff code for the product in question (eg 2203 beer made from malt), and the country of destination, you get an overview of all the tax, duties and regulations to be complied with.
this can be a bit tricky to read/interpret as there is a lot of information provided on the site, so let us know if you need any specific info.
This is for the countries outside the EU 28 …

For EU countries, tax on alcohol is still a national legislative prerogative and this would need to be investigated on a case by case basis.
as a starting point this website may be helpful relating to excise tax:

does this help?
if you let me know via where you are based, I can signpost you to your local EEN team who will be pleased to help or your clients with this type of enquiries.

kind regards



you could also have a look at the webinar done in the last couple of weeks by Opentoexport and have a word with some of the speakers:

Hope it helps

Kind regards



For exports of beer outside the EU, you will need to prepare and submit a Customs export declaration.

Export declarations have to be submitted to the Customs computer system known as CHIEF (Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight) electronically. Details of the current requirements for completion of the declarations can be found in Volume 3, Part 1.9 of the UK Tariff however we would recommend that you contact a freight forwarder who can prepare and submit declarations directly onto CHIEF on your behalf.

You will need to obtain a Customs commodity code for the goods, and depending on the type of goods involved, you may require more than one.

More detailed information on the above can be found in our Public Notice No.275 a copy of which is available from our website at > Quick Links – Library, Official Statistics > Publications > Notices, Information Sheets and other reference materials > Import, export and international trade > Public Notices > Yes to open site > Scroll to notice required if necessary.

HM Revenue & Customs
Customs International Trade & Excise

Export Action Plan