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Imports Intelligence Hub

The Imports Intelligence Hub (IIH) provides information on a range of border data and intelligence connected with the import of high-risk food and feed of non-animal origin (HRFNAO) and products of animal origin (POAO).

Last updated: 16 July 2024
See all updates
Last updated: 16 July 2024
See all updates

National Monitoring Plan - Data Analysis Report

This is a summary of the sampling results of imported products of animal origin (POAO) undertaken at UK Border Inspection Posts (BCPs), under the UK’s National Monitoring Plan (NMP). NMP data for POAO have been sourced from the Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed System (IPAFFS) where the ‘random’ button has been selected on the ‘checks’ tab. IPAFFS is GB’s replacement for the EU’s TRACES system.

National Monitoring Plan for POAO: Data Analysis Report 2022-23

Early Warning System (EWS)

The imports Early Warning System (EWS) notification is usually published at the end of each month listing specific commodity/country/hazard combinations that have been identified during the previous month as “emerging” risks. This is through a process that involves the gathering and analysis of alerts from various intelligence sources from the UK, the EU and beyond.

The imports EWS objective is primarily to alert UK enforcement officers and others about these emerging risks, but also to gather further evidence and help with imported food legislation reviews.

The EWS notifications are available on the Smarter Communications platform. You must sign-up and log-in on the platform to access.

Trade Control – HRFNAO

The Trade Control & Expert System – Food of Non-Animal Origin dataset contains surveillance monitoring of imported food and feed of non-animal origin undertaken by our Port Health Authorities (PHAs) and recorded on IPAFFS. We use this information to evaluate imported food risks to public health. 

This is GB data from Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed System (IPAFFS) post EU exit.

Trade Control – POAO

The Trade Control & Expert System – Products of Animal Origin dataset records the controls applied to products of animal origin imported into the United Kingdom via approved designated ports (BCPs). We use this information to evaluate imported food risks to public health.

This is GB data from Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed System (IPAFFS) post EU exit.

Border Notifications (BNs)

The data for Border Notifications relates to imports that have failed food safety checks at the GB border. Such failures are recorded on the Border Notifications Dashboard (BN Dashboard), a module built within IPAFFS (Import of Products, Animals, Food and Feed System). This data is submitted by the Port Health Authority (PHA) and informs the FSA of imported consignments that may pose public health risks in GB.  
The data published is a summary of the information collected through the BN system. This includes when the BN was raised by the PHA on IPAFFS; the Country the consignment originates from; product details and hazard category as listed by the PHA; whether the commodity is controlled by legislation; type of consignment; and type of failure. The reason for failure is summarised by the FSA and where information is not available it is denoted by NA. 
Checks on food at the point of import are in place to control the risks to human and animal health. The PHA carry out checks on food and feed consignments on a risk basis, in order to:

  • ensure that only products that are safe to eat are placed on the GB market
  • safeguard animal and public health
  • check compliance with GB legislation 

PHAs are responsible for monitoring and safety of imported food, however Importers are responsible to ensure products are safe and meet GB food safety requirements.  Although checks may be carried out on any imported food consignment from third countries, the actual checks carried out are determined on a risk basis. For products that have been declared as high-risk, special health controls are in place and imports must be pre notified on IPAFFS to the relevant Border Control Post were the consignment enters GB. In addition, some high-risk products must be accompanied with specific documentation and export health certification to demonstrate import conditions have been met. 
There are three levels of checks carried out by PHAs, these are: 

  • documentary check, the export health certificate and any accompanying laboratory test results are checked for authenticity and referenced with the details of the commercial documents to ensure that they relate to the consignment
  • identity check involves the inspection of the consignment to ensure that the goods match the information on the certification, labelling and health marking
  • physical check of the goods involves the inspection of the product to ensure that it is safe to eat and to ensure it is the same product as certified - where appropriate, it will also involve organoleptic assessment and samples taken for laboratory analysis

While the FSA provides guidance on what to sample through the National Monitoring Plan (NMP), its implementation is directed by PHAs and this can lead to variations in sampling patterns and in the triggering of Border Notifications.