How to Internationally Export your Food Product

April 08, 2019

International export is somewhat opaque from the outside, and can seem like a difficult or impossible activity for companies to get involved in. However, it’s not quite as challenging as you might assume, and we’ve broken it down into 6 steps to give you an overview of the process.

Step 1)

Determine which market you wish to export to. This could be the America, China or any other economic area you might be interested in. This will require some research to find where might have the highest demand for your product.

Step 2)

Determine exactly what tasks and types of product you will be conducting and manufacturing in your facility. Primarily the necessary approvals are decided by the animal products involved in the manufacture. Pork products require a pork approval, beef a beef approval and so on for poultry etc. The second factor are the activities being conducted on site. For this reason many manufacturers get approved for manufacture but avoid storing completed products on site so that they do not have to acquire a storage approval.

Step 2)

Once you’ve determined the economic area you wish to sell in, and the activities and products you will be involved in, contact the FSA and request an inspection of your production facility for the specific country/economic area you’re interested in. Different rules and inspection criteria apply to each, and you can find details of these and the various approvals on the FSA’s website.

Step 3a)

If your inspection is successful, and you pass, then the FSA should be able to recommend your facility for approval from the specific country or economic area that you applied to.

Step 3b)

While the application period is ongoing it is a good idea to define how you are going to retail your product in the chosen market. For many companies the easiest path is to secure a deal with an exporter. Exporters purchase products internationally and import them into a market and then sell them to wholesalers or retailers directly. This arrangement makes things very easy for the manufacturer, simply produce and then the exporter takes care of the rest and either collects directly from you or your chosen storage provider.

Step 4) Secure storage space with a Cold Store that has the correct approvals for the product, process and destination that you need.

Step 5) With an exporter secured, your inspection passed, and your product securely stored with an approved warehouse you should receive your Third Country Approval. This is a happy day, because you’ve probably waited a long time and put in a lot of work to get there.

Step 6)  

All that’s left is to produce the stock and ship it to your warehousing partner. Remember that you will need to complete all the paperwork for each shipment, most importantly the Vegetarian Health Certificate.

At Rick Bestwick we’re very happy to be partnered with a number of the UKs largest food exporters and every day we dispatch products to dozens of countries worldwide.

We’re fully licensed and approved for the EU, the USA, Hong Kong, South Korea, Australia, South Africa, Malaysia, The Philippines, The Ivory Coast, Saudi Arabia and even China.

If you’re interested in importing or exporting food products, give us a call.