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Food Safety

Veterinary border control

The veterinary border control is a key factor to ensure that the live animals and animal products entering to the European Union are safe and meeting the specific import conditions laid down in the Union legislation.

The imported live animals and animal products present the highest level of risks as they can transmit serious human and animal diseases. Therefore it is necessary to subject them to specific controls at their point of entry, so called Border Control Posts (BCPs).

A consignment of live animals or animal products can only enter into the EU, if it has satisfactorily undergone the specific checks and a Common Health Entry Document (CHED) is issued from TRACES (TRAde Control and Expert System). TRACES is a centralised database which allows the monitoring of consignments of live animals and animal products checked at the BCPs. TRACES may automatically exchange data on import controls with customs authorities, which has enabled DG TAXUD and DG SANTE to develop an EU Single Window project.

Related links

Further information

Approved warehouses/ship suppliers

In order to assist EU countries in making up-to-date lists available to other EU countries and to the public, the Commission has created a single, central and easy access to the lists of approved warehouses.

Contact details of BCPs - veterinary

Contact details of Border Control Posts (BCPs) in the veterinary field.

Designated Border Control Posts (BCPs)

The lists of designated veterinary BCPs are available for EU countries, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland.

Expert group

Advising the Commission on issues relating to veterinary import controls legislation, their implementation and development. Exchange information, experience and good practice on veterinary import controls covered by EU legislation.


Frequently Asked Questions on a range of topic, including: Products, Live animal, Certification, Transit and Official controls in BIPs


There is a comprehensive body of Union legislation in place, which deals with veterinary border control. The most important pieces of legislation are to be found here.

Reports and guidelines

Reports and guidelines on the veterinary border control topic.

Special Import Conditions

As the world's biggest importer and exporter of foodstuffs, the EU works closely with international organisations and offers advice as well as assistance to third country trading partners.


Within the framework of the Better Training for Safer Food programme, the Commission organises regular training sessions on veterinary checks at airport, seaport, road and rail border control posts (BCPs). Find out more.

Useful links

Some useful links on a range of subjects: International organisations, Import conditions, Pet animals, Trade and Imports of Animal Products, Agreements, Illegal Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing activities