Horses: Imports

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 27th March 2019.

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Photo of Angela Smith Angela Smith Independent, Penistone and Stocksbridge

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed System will enable horses to be traced post-import and check-tested.

Photo of David Rutley David Rutley Assistant Whip (HM Treasury), Government Whip

If we leave the EU without a deal, horse movements into the UK from countries outside the EU will have to be notified before arrival in the UK using the Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed System (IPAFFS). Those horses will need to enter the UK via an appropriate Border Inspection Post in the UK for checks.

Notifications before arrival will also be required for horses coming into the UK from the EU, with the exception of horses travelling from the Republic of Ireland which will be exempt.

For an initial period, these notifications for horses travelling from the EU will not be raised through IPAFFS. The importer should download and complete a notification form from

This form should then be sent to the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) for all imports coming into England, Wales and Scotland, or to the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) for movements into Northern Ireland.

Those authorities will issue a unique notification number, which is required to complete the health certificate that must accompany consignments. Health certificates are available here:

APHA and DAERA will, after the arrival of the horses in the UK, carry out risk-based checks at the final point of destination as they do now.

From autumn 2019, notifications will be made using IPAFFS.

Detailed guidance for importers is available at

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