Preparing for changes at the UK border if there’s a no deal EU Exit: Guidance for the agriculture & food industry

Government departments are providing advice for businesses on preparing for a range of Brexit scenarios. Defra has recently released advice for agricultural and food-based businesses on the implications of no deal being agreed with the EU before the 29th March 2019.

The website is the main source of this advice, which includes high-level context, audience-specific checklists and sources of further information. Please use this site to check for the latest advice from Government.

The following text is taken from a leaflet released in January 2019 by Defra (PDF): guidance for the agriculture and food industries

What you need to know

The United Kingdom will be leaving the European Union at 11pm UK time on 29 March 2019. Leaving the EU with a deal remains the Government’s top priority and would give businesses stability and certainty to prepare for our new relationship after EU Exit.

However, the government must plan for every possible outcome including no deal. Without a deal, businesses may need to take action before 29 March 2019.

Use this information to understand how leaving the EU may affect your business and what you can do to get ready.

Preparing for changes at the UK border if there’s a no deal EU Exit

What will change:

At the UK border, there will be changes to UK-EU trade, including on:

  • Customs, trade tariffs and VAT
  • Safety and Security for goods
  • Document requirements
  • Vehicle standards
  • Controlled products

Actions to keep your goods moving across the border

Immediate actions:

  • Register for an EORI number
  • Decide if you will handle new Customs and Safety and Security Declarations in-house or with a third-party
  • Make sure you have the required documents for your goods (e.g. Export Health Certificate, Catch Certificates, equine/plant IDs)
  • Check for updates on tariffs that apply to your goods, and consider using duty relief schemes
  • Make sure drivers are aware of the documents they may need at the border

Recommended actions:

  • Discuss preparations with customers and suppliers, including responsibilities and Incoterms
  • Plan for travel via Border Inspection Posts and Designated Points of Entry for certain goods
  • Tell your employees about changes to passport rules

Where you can find information:

UK Government resources

Go to to get guidance for your business

You will find information on a range of topics including:

  • Customs, Safety & Security processes
  • EORI registration
  • Product licences and certificates
  • Product-specific entry requirements (including ports and documents)

Industry & international resources

  • Information on the EU’s approach to borders with the UK. Publication office for EU countries:

Chambers of Commerce

UK Trade Associations

  • Industry-specific information

Information is available in other mediums, including this link to a short video on YouTube which covers the same content contained within the leaflet, which can be downloaded here as a PDF: guidance for the agriculture and food industries

The above information was correct at the time of publishing. We will use our best endeavours to keep this information up-to-date. However, we all know that the situation regarding Brexit is changing rapidly and we recommend checking on the website for the latest advice from Government.