United States Mission to the European Union
Foreign Agricultural Service
United States Department Of Agriculture
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Last modified: December 12, 2017

Personal Consignments and Commercial Samples

On 1 May 2009, explicit EU rules on the entry of personal consignments of animal products into the EU, whether accompanied or by mail, entered into force (Commission Regulation (EC) No 206/2009).

Individuals are generally not permitted to bring in meat, milk or their products into the EU.

  • There is an exemption for powdered infant milk, infant food, and special foods or special pet feed required for medical reasons, if weighing less than 2 kilograms, provided that:
    • products do not require refrigeration before opening,
    • products are packaged, proprietary brand products for direct sale to the consumer, and
    • the packaging is unbroken, unless currently being used
  • For fishery products (incl. fish and shellfish such as shrimps, lobsters, and dead mussels or oysters), travelers may bring in up to 20 kilograms or the weight of one fish if this is higher.
  • For other animal products, such as honey, live oysters, live mussels and snails, for example, travelers are allowed to bring in up to 2 kilograms.

Product samples destined for human consumption have to comply with the food regulations applicable in the EU.  In order to send product samples to commercial trade shows, it is advised to make contact with the FAS office(http://www.fas.usda.gov/ofso/overseas_post_directory/ovs_directory_search.asp) in the Member State where the trade show takes place .  Please also contact these offices for information on exports of food samples for technical or research purposes.