Plant Health Update Information

Plant Health Update Information

30 Oct 2023

The GB Plant Health Service have introduced legislation (link here) that has the below changes. Risk assessments are a dynamic process, so all commodities remain under continuous review.

From 17 November 2023, low-risk fruit and vegetables from the EU, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein will no longer require pre-notification (see more details and a Q&A here).

In addition, from 24 November 2023, certain pest and trade-facilitating legislative changes will come into force. The changes include:

  • Deregulating certain Quarantine Pests
  • Regulating certain viroid’s of tomato and/or pepper
  • Incorporating the existing derogations of ash wood from Canada and the USA, and certain conifer species of bonsai trees from Japan, into legislation.

From 2 May 2024, the remaining proposed changes will come into force. This includes:

  • Listing certain pests, on the basis of a preliminary assessment, as provisional quarantine pests.
  • Expanding import requirements to cover plants for planting of potato
  • Integrating the current arrangement for ToBRFV testing requirements for seeds into legislation
  • Extending a specific import requirement to include EU Member states, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland, treating all countries equally.

Please see the Q&A document for more information on these pest measures.

In addition, Defra has introduced legislation (link here) that extends the Movement Assistance Scheme (MAS) in England for plant health purposes. Equivalent legislation will be introduced in Wales and Scotland.

MAS is a scheme that assists with the associated plant health inspection and certification costs for businesses moving plants and plant products to Northern Ireland. This scheme was due to close in December 2023, but now has now been extended until 30 June 2025. Please see here for further details.