Bureau of Standards Jamaica
The EU's food safety framework is comprehensive and strict. The main export requirements can be classified in the categories of: Sanitary and Phytosanitary; Environmental Requirements; Technical Requirements and Other Requirements. Sanitary and phytosanitary requirements are measures which protect humans, animals and plants from diseases, pests or contaminants. Goods imported into the EU must meet the sanitary and phytosanitary requirements. It should be noted that the EU's food safety framework is comprehensive and one of the most strict in the world. More information on sanitary and phytosanitary measures can be found under Resources. Additional information on SPS requirements can also be obtained from Jamaica's SPS Enquiry Point, the Plant Quarantine Division in the Ministry of Agriculture
Food and feed safety covers the general principles and requirements of food law and traceability (from farm to table) as well as rules on pesticides, contaminants, genetically modified foods, food additives, specific marketing and labelling requirements, special rules for certain foods (e.g. cocoa and mineral waters) and specific rules for foods targeted at certain consumers (e.g. infants, children).
EU rules on animals and products of animal origin (e.g. meat, fish, dairy products) have been developed to protect and improve the health particularly of food-producing animals. In the EU the import regulations for food of animal origin are not entirely the same as for food of non-animal origin (e.g. fruit, vegetables) or as for food containing both processed ingredients of animal origin and ingredients of plant origin etc. For starters, product of animal origin may only be imported from approved countries and approved establishments in these countries. Imports must be accompanied by a health certificate and are subject to health checks at the border. Twenty companies in Jamaica have been approved to import fishery products into the EU.
All plants and plant products exported to the EU – including fruits, vegetables and wood products, must comply with the EU legislation on plant health. These requirements mainly imply that certain commodities are not allowed into the EU unless well-established conditions are complied with and that specified plants and plant products must be accompanied by a plant health certificate. These phytosanitary requirements also apply to wood packaging for both food and non-food products. Plants and plant products are also subject to inspection at the border.
EU’s public health rules protect the population from health threats. These threats include communicable diseases, health problems related to unhealthy lifestyles and trade in drug precursors.
The main export requirements can be classified in the categories of: Sanitary and Phytosanitary; Environmental Requirements; Technical Requirements and Other Requirements. All goods imported into the EU must meet the environmental requirements. The requirements are classified as follows: chemicals, ozone-depleting substances, fluorinated greenhouse gases, endangered species and waste. More information on the below can be found under Resources.
With respect to chemicals and the relevant legislation, Jamaican manufacturers will be most interested in the REACH chemical regulation. This regulation was adopted to improve the protection of human health and the environment. REACH applies to all chemical substances. This includes not only those chemicals used in industrial processes, but also those used day-to-day, for example in cleaning products, paints, cosmetics, etc. For companies established outside the EU, the obligations of REACH do not apply directly to you but rather with EU importers. However, it is important to note that EU importers will likely only work with companies that meet the obligations set out in the REACH regulation. In addition, special rules apply to manufacturers of fertilizers, detergents, plant protection products, biocides, products containing Nonyl Phenols (NP) and Nonyl Phenol Ethoxylates (NPEs) and products containing solvents.
Jamaican exporters of products containing ozone depleting substances (e.g. spray cans, refrigerators, solvents or fire extinguishers) must make sure that these ozone depleting substances used are not prohibited in the EU. Limited quantities of ozone-depleting substances may enter the EU, but only under stringent conditions.
Jamaican exporters of products containing fluorinated greenhouse gases (e.g. refrigerating products, air-conditioning and heat-pump equipment, high voltage switchgear, footwear, tyres, aerosols or fire protection systems) must make sure that these products meet the requirements related to the use of fluorinated greenhouse gases.
Any exporter of wild flora, fauna or products thereof must take into consideration the provisions laid down in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora in order to ensure entry of these goods into the EU.
As it pertains to waste, the regulations of most interest to Jamaican exporters relates to packaging waste. Packaging used for the EU market must meet requirements with respect to composition and recoverability to reduce the amount of waste that enters the landfill. In essence, packaging must be of minimal value and weight; contain minimal quantities of hazardous substances (i.e. heavy metals); be suitable for reuse, recovery and recycling and be labelled to indicate its composition, thereby facilitating collection, reuse and recovery.