In the EU, pet food is not regulated by one specific piece of legislation. The EU’s Animal Feed legislation covers food for companion animals as well as food for all other animals. Pet food is often also subject to the EU’s veterinary legislation which has different product coverage than the feed marketing legislation. The veterinary legislation covers products of animal origin and hay/straw as these present a risk for spreading animal diseases. The EU’s approach in dealing with these risks consists of a system of mandatory consignment notification and inspection at port of entry as well as product establishment approval and export certification in the country of origin.
Specific certification rules have been developed for various product groups, including “animal by-products.” The Regulation (EC) No 1069/2009 lays down health rules as regards to animal-by-products and derived products not intended for human consumption. The EU’s animal by-product legislation contains several certificates required for successfully shipping pet food with animal origin ingredients.
All exports of U.S. pet food to the European Union must comply with EU requirements which include rules on labeling, hygiene, animal health, certification and the use of additives. U.S. pet food exporters must verify the full set of import requirements with their EU customers. Final import approval is subject to the importing country’s rules as interpreted by border officials at the time of product entry.
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