‘Practically impossible’ Northern Ireland wild game import regulations

A shooter and their gundog

BASC is backing efforts by government to challenge rules which make it ‘practically impossible’ to bring game meat into Northern Ireland.

Following Brexit, the rules mean that visitors to Great Britain from Northern Ireland must comply with regulation to take home their shot quarry. We believe the rules will significantly damage shooting tourism between Northern Ireland and Great Britain.

BASC has written to the Northern Ireland’s Minister of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs, Edwin Poots MLA, and he has, in turn, contacted the European Commission.

In a written reply to BASC, Minister Poots said: “I have written to the European Commission highlighting the requirements associated with Export Health Certificates (EHC) and requested that consideration be given to mitigations for these rules where possible.”

We are also working closely with the European Federation for Hunting and Conservation (FACE) to raise the issue with the EU Commission.

What checks are required on wild game meat entering Northern Ireland?

As a result of the EU Withdrawal Agreement and the NI Protocol, the Department of Agriculture Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) is required to carry out checks on meat entering Northern Ireland from Great Britain, in line with EU law.

Anyone wishing to bring dead wild game into the country must first have it inspected in Great Britain by an Official Veterinarian who, when satisfied, will issue an EHC. 

To satisfy the requirement of the EHC, the meat must have been processed in an establishment approved for export to the EU and which is listed on the European Commission website. 

The EHC must accompany the meat to the Border Control Post (BCP) in Northern Ireland. The BCP must be notified of the intended arrival a minimum of 24 hours in advance and a failure to declare the consignment would be an offence.

Read the full press release here.

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