How do I export organic foods from the EU to China?


Hi Experts. We would like to start exporting EU manufactured organic foods from the UK to China. Our buyer has an import licence but hasn’t imported foods before and to date has primarily been involved in exports of textiles. I was recently told that there is currently no mutual recognition of organic certifications between the EU and China but that negotiations are in progress. In the absence of such recognition, can somebody tell me the procedure for exporting organic foods into China? And if it’s too difficult at this time, is it acceptable to cover the organic labelling with a Chinese label and not market/sell the product as organic? Thanks in advance


Dear Nicola
We suggest that your buyer in China approaches the local Customs authorities or people that issued the import license in china to see if they are able provide firm information about the
documentation requirement that are necessary. Perhaps the UKDTI offices in China or their
help desk in London could help ( try their web site we believe it is
On the freighting side of things please contact us directly on 01263 513127 or email
[email protected] .
we look forward to hearing from yourselves shortly
Best regards
Colin ; Crown Freight


Dear Nicola
Exporting organic food and drink products to mainland China does requires an investment of resources, both time and cost and can be challenging although one of our members has recently been successful in achieving organic accreditation to sell organic dairy products to China. If you would like to contact me with more information about your product range I will hopefully be able to provide you with more detailed information.

The FDEA has been helping UK food and drink exporters develop the Chinese market in recent years including the running of the UK pavilion and trade development programme at FHC (Food and Hotel China) Shanghai. We have just launched the 2013 programme (11 – 15 November) which included generous support form UKTI for eligible companies. Full details can me found on


Information on the Customs requirements for exporting is given in HMRC Public Notice 275. All notices can be found on our website under Quick Links > Library > Official Statistics – Publications – Notices, Info Sheets & Other Reference Materials > Import, Export & International Trade. The Public Notices are in numerical order.

A more comprehensive guide to importing / exporting can be found on our website by selecting ‘Import and export’ from the home page and then scroll down to ‘Guide to importing and exporting: Breaking down the barriers’.

I would also suggest that you contact the Chinese Customs Authorities to ascertain if there are any import restrictions on such items.

HM Revenue & Customs
Customs International Trade & Excise

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