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Imports and Exports

inspector in fields of flowersOutwith the EU - Imports

The import of many plants and plant products from non-EU countries is prohibited or restricted, to prevent the introduction of pests. Importers must ensure that consignments are accompanied by a phytosanitary certificate from the plant health authority of the country of origin. This will need to be checked by a plant health inspector before the consignment can be cleared by Customs. All consignments should be notified to Horticulture and Marketing Unit at hort.marketing@gov.scot at least 3 days before arrival. For fuller details refer to the Plant Health Guide - Guide for Importers.

Review of the Plant Health Import Inspection Fees

A public consultation took place between 21 July and 13 October 2014 inviting comments on the proposals to revise the plant health import inspection fees in Scotland following a review of these charges.  Throughout the 12-week consultation period four responses were received from Stakeholder Organisations who actively import plants and/or plant products.  A summary of responses was prepared and formed the basis of the decision to implement the revised fee structure.  The Plant Health (Import Inspection Fees) (Scotland) Regulations 2014 set out these charges for plant and products imported from countries outside the EU and will come into force on 15 January 2015.

EU (including Switzerland) Tree Notifications -Imports

Stakeholders were advised that the statutory notification scheme for imports of certain tree species from other EU member states has been extended to include Prunus genera and that the timing period has been amended.

Statutory notification: Castanea (Sweet Chestnut), Fraxinus (Ash), Pinus (Pine), Platanus (Plane), Prunus (e.g. Cherry, Plum, Laurels), Quercus (Oak) and Ulmus (Elm) trees landing at a Scottish port must be notified to hort.marketing@gov.scot in advance or no later than 5 days after landing, by completing and returning the import notification of trees form.

Statutory notification: Castanea (Sweet Chestnut), Fraxinus (Ash), Pinus (Pine), Platanus (Plane), Prunus (e.g. Cherry, Plum, Laurels), Quercus (Oak) and Ulmus (Elm) trees for Scotland or England via an English port must be notified to the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) by using the eDomero system, in advance or no later than 5 days after landing.

Importing plants through England or Wales

If you are importing plants or plant products through England or Wales please see the Fera website for guidance


Material licenced for scientific or trial purposes

It may be possible to import, move and keep material which is normally prohibited under a licence for scientific or trial purposes, subject to detailed conditions on quarantine and containment. This licensing scheme is managed by SASA: more information is available on their website


Outwith the EU - Exports

If you wish to export plants or plant products to non-EU countries you may need to provide a phytosanitary certificate or meet other requirements to show that they are free from pests. RPID provides export certification and inspection services, for a fee, and can help to advise on requirements for different countries. Please contact the Horticulture and Marketing Unit for assistance at hort.marketing@gov.scot.