The UK has left the EU

If your business deals in food, or animal feed, your responsibility to make sure it is safe will continue to be requirement of law after 31 January 2020. On that date, the UK left the EU and entered into a transition period until the end of 2020.

During the transition period, businesses will be able to trade with the EU on the same terms as before. There are no immediate changes that will come into effect before 1 January 2021 that you need to prepare for.

Current requirements include:

  • General food law
  • Food labelling
  • Health marks on meat, fish and dairy products
  • Importing high-risk food and feed
  • Animal feed law, animal feed additives, GM in animal feed
  • Third country representation for animal feed businesses
  • Novel foods

The transition period

There is now a transition period until the end of 2020 while the UK and EU negotiate additional arrangements.

The current rules on trade, travel, and business for the UK and EU will continue to apply during the transition period. This includes rules on food and feed.

New rules will take effect on 1 January 2021.

You should prepare now. Visit to find out about actions your business can take now to prepare for 2021.

EU food and animal feed legislation

The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 provides that, from 1 January 2021, certain directly applicable EU legislation will be converted into UK law.

The Act provides powers to make corrections to retained EU law, so that it operates effectively as UK law. These corrections have been made by way of statutory instruments (SIs). The FSA has made a number of these, following our consultation on a proposed approach to retained EU law for food and feed safety and hygiene. All exit related statutory instruments are published on, and include ‘EU Exit’ in their title.

How the FSA has prepared for the UK leaving the EU

Leaving the EU hasn’t changed our top priority which is to ensure that UK food remains safe and what it says it is. The FSA is working hard to ensure that the high standard of food safety and consumer protection we enjoy in this country is maintained when the UK leaves the EU. Throughout the transition period and beyond we are committed to having in place a robust and effective regulatory regime which will mean business can continue as normal.

Read about our food and animal feed safety risk analysis from 1 January 2021