Supplementary guidance on veterinary certification
The British Veterinary Association (BVA) has responded following the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons’ (RCVS) announcement that it has prepared time-limited supplementary guidance on export health certification in case of a no-deal Brexit.
The RCVS prepared the guidance following an urgent request from the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) to outline interim measures to ease pressures in case of a no-deal scenario and help to cope with certification demand for substantial volumes of product exports. The guidance relates to low-risk products of animal origin in single consignments for export to or transit through the EU – including composite products such as pizzas, ready meals and processed milk.
Under APHA’s proposed Trusted Suppliers Scheme, an Official Veterinarian (OV) would rely on a ‘support attestation’ to certify low-risk products for export and transit, comprising a supplier declaration made by a representative of the company supplying the products, alongside a declaration by a registered veterinary surgeon (or Certification Support Officer working under direction of an OV) carrying out relevant checks in relation to the supplier.
Daniella Dos Santos, BVA president, said: “When the APHA first outlined these proposals we raised concerns about the impacts that they might have, and we are grateful that some changes have been made in response. As stated, this is a temporary measure that will only come into play in the event of a no-deal scenario; but we will be monitoring developments closely.
“Depending on how things play out in Parliament, it will be important to use any extra time to feed into the proposals and ensure that there are further opportunities for engagement across the veterinary community as they take shape.”