Regulation (EC) No 882/2004 (Article 23) allows the European Commission to approve specific pre-export checks carried out by a non-EU country prior to exporting a given product (feed or food) to the EU. Where such approval has been granted, the frequency of import controls may be reduced.
The approval of pre-export checks may only be granted to an exporting non-EU country if:
- the EU audit has shown that feed or food exported to the EU meets the relevant requirements;
- the controls carried out in the non-EU country prior to dispatch are considered sufficiently effective and efficient to replace or reduce the documentary, identity and physical checks carried out on the basis of EU legislation.
Such approval does not affect the right of the EU countries' competent authority to carry out official controls on imported feed and food to verify that the pre-export checks carried out in the non-EU country remain effective.
The following approvals have been granted so far:
- Commission Decision 2008/47/EC approving the pre-export checks carried out by the United States of America on peanuts and derived products thereof as regards the presence of aflatoxins;
- Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 844/2011 approving the pre-export checks carried out by Canada on wheat and wheat flour as regards the presence of ochratoxin A.