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Recommendations 3

The process cycle for food

imports in East Asia 7

Snapshot of the food import

process in East Asia 8

Food import processes

by country 10

Indonesia 11

Japan 13

Malaysia 15

Philippines 18

Singapore 22

South Korea 24

Thailand 26

Vietnam 30

Ownership / responsibility
for food imports 33

Timelines for food registration approval 33

Key contacts by country 34

What companies need to keep in mind, INDONESIA
prior to exporting into East Asia:
Find out the HS code of the food product to be JAPAN
exported, and check for tariffs at https://tariff- Check for any import restrictions
with NZTE in-market personnel. MALAYSIA
Ensure that the right food category for the HS code
is used, so that the product does not fall into the PHILIPPINES
functional food category unless mandatory - import
requirements are very stringent. SINGAPORE
For most countries, processed food import laws
are much simpler than for horticulture or meat SOUTH KOREA
products. Also, if the percentage of meat is below
a specific level (varying by country), products can
be classified as non-meat and hence import THAILAND
procedures can be simpler.
Many countries require multiple documents for VIETNAM
meat and horticultural products, such as details
of facilities where the food product was produced
or packed, phytosanitary certificates, HACCP
certificates and health certificates.
For countries such as Singapore, Japan and South
Korea, food sanitation laws are very strict and once
a consignment gets rejected it can be difficult to get
your company approved again.
For countries such as Thailand, the Philippines,
Indonesia, and Vietnam, its often helpful to find an
importer / distributor who can assist with import
Malaysia has very strict Halal laws, and its a good
idea to check with NZTE in-market personnel for the
latest updates to Halal laws before exporting any
meat based products.

Food Food Food
regulators regulators regulators
BPOM (National The main regulatory body, sitting under the Ministry Ministry of MHLW is a food risk management agency. The general Food and Drug The erstwhile Bureau of Food and Drugs (BFAD) under the
Agency for of Health (MOH). It ensures that all food and beverage Health, Labour requirements and standards are set by MHLW and apply to Administration Department of Health (DOH) has been renamed as the FDA
Food and Drug products (including cosmetics and drugs) available in the and Welfare all types of foods including imported foods. (FDA) with extra powers
Control) market are safe for public consumption (MHLW)
The FDA, as an agency under the Department of Health,
BPOM tests all processed food products and is also The Ministry MAFF is also involved in food safety risk management, has expanded powers including the ability to ban, recall,
responsible for labelling and issuing of registration numbers of Agriculture, mainly in the area of food labelling through the Japan and withdraw any health product that have caused death,
(MLs) for imported food products. Every food and beverage Forestry and Agricultural Standards (JAS) Law, and animal and plant serious illness or injury to a consumer
product sold in Indonesia (including wine) sold should Fisheries health protection through a series of quarantine laws.
(MAFF) The agency also has the authority to conduct spot checks
obtain approval from BPOM. Website
on establishments for compliance and issue cease-and-
Ministry of The Directorate-General of Livestock in the Ministry of Key websites desist orders of products that fail safety standards
Agriculture Agriculture is responsible for issuing SPP for animal-based
(MOA) Three bureaux The main regulatory bodies monitoring the safety aspects
processed foods under the of imported agriculture and food products are the Bureau of
Ministry of MOT is a policy-making body directing the formulation of
Food laws: jurisdiction of Animal Industry (BAI), the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic
the Department Resources (BFAR) and the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI)
Trade (MOT) policies related to the development of trade and industry. There are four major laws in Japan pertaining to food safety and standards: of Agriculture
MOT provides approval for certain agricultural products and (DOA) All three bureaux are under the jurisdiction of the
determines the allowed import volumes for these products The Food Safety Basic Law sets the principles for developing a food Department of Agriculture
safety regime and also defines the role of the Food Safety Commission, a
Indonesian MUI is the only organisation that has the authority to certify Centre for Food Food products must be registered with the Centre for Food
food related risk assessment body. Regulation Regulation and Research (CFRR) of the FDA, and must also
council of halal in Indonesia. In 2014, the country tabled a new Halal
Ulema (MUI) Food Sanitation Law ensures the safety and sanitation of foods through and Research be issued with a Certificate of Product Registration (CPR)
Law. The new law mandates the establishment of a new
Islamic (CFRR) of the before manufacture, import, distribution and so on
agency in 2019, the Halal Product Guarantee Agency, the Ministry of Health. The law prohibits the sale of foods containing FDA
authority known as BPJPH harmful substances. It also prescribes standards for foods, additives, food
containers and packages. Key websites

Japan Agricultural Standards Law The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry

Food laws: and Fisheries (MAFF) is involved in food safety risk management, mainly in
Food laws:
the area of food labelling through the Japan Agricultural Standards.
The Food Law No. 18/2012 regulates all food and food products, defined In August 2013, the Republic Act No. 10611 Food Safety Act of 2013 was
Health Promotion Law aims to provide a basic framework for the overall
as all food which originates from biological agricultural sources. This law signed into law. The Act strengthens the food safety regulatory system
promotion of public health improvement, because the importance of
is a comprehensive regulation covering all food and food products. This in the Philippines, which protects consumer health and facilitates market
improving public health increases markedly with the progress of population
replaces the Republic of Indonesia Act No. 7 of 1996 which was the most access of local food and food products.
ageing and the changing of disease structures.
comprehensive legislation governing production, import, and distribution
In 2014, the FDA issued Administrative Order 29 on Rules and Regulation
of foodstuffs.
on Licensing of Food Establishments and Registration of Processed Foods,
All imported meat and meat based products, except pork, must be Applicable laws for each category
and Other Food Products, and for Other Purposes.
accompanied by a halal certificate. Horticulture Meat/ meat Fishery Other In February 2015, the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the 2013
Any processed food either produced domestically or imported into products processed Food Safety Act were signed by the Secretaries of Health and Agriculture,
Indonesia for trade in retail packaging has to obtain a BPOM registration foods formally implementing the law.
approval letter prior to distribution. Domestic animal
In addition to these laws, there are various Presidential Instructions, infectious disease
control law Yes
Ministerial Regulations, Ministerial Decisions and Departmental.
Determinations that regulate food production, import, and distribution. Plant protection
law Yes
Based on the new Halal Product Law of 2014 (applicable by 2019), halal
certification will be mandatory for most consumable products, including Food sanitation
food and beverages, medicines, cosmetics, chemical products, biological law Yes Yes Yes Yes
products, and genetically-engineered products, to the extent such
products are manufactured, imported, distributed and/or traded in the
Indonesian customs area.

Food Food Food
regulators regulators regulators
Food Safety FSQD is responsible for the implementation and Agri-Food and Food and supplements of a food nature come under the Food and Drug The Ministry of Public Health is designated by law to take
and Quality enforcement of the food law in Malaysia. FSQD is in Veterinary purview of the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA). Administration executive charge of the Food Act. Food control activities
Division (FSQD) charge of food safety certification schemes such as Health Authority (AVA) AVA ensures a supply of safe food, safeguards the health of (FDA) are the responsibility of the Food and Drug Administration
of the Ministry Certificates, HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control animals and plants, and facilitates agri-trade (FDA), which is a department of the Ministry of Public
of Health Health
Points) certification and Free Sale Certificates
(MOH) Key websites
The Food The Food Control Division, under the FDA, is responsible
Control for the control of licensing of local manufacturing and
Division, under importation of food products, registration of specifically
The JAKIM Halal hub provides certifications related to Food laws: the FDA controlled food, and food labelling
halal. Applicants who are eligible to apply for the Halal
of Islamic Confirmation Certificate are categorized as follows: Type of Foods and legislation:
of Malaysia)
Manufacturer/Producer; Distributor/Trader; Sub-contract
Manufacturer; Repacking; Food Premise; or Abattoir/
Meat and fish Food laws:
Slaughterhouse. Application for the Halal Confirmation Wholesome Meat and Fish Act, Sale of Food Act, Food Regulations Thailands food industry is governed by the Food Act of B.E. 2522 (1979)
Certificate for national and international markets should be
Fresh fruit and vegetables and subsequent laws stipulated by the Ministry of Health. Imports of food
submitted to the JAKIM Halal Hub as an online application
Control of Plants Act, Sale of Food Act, Food Regulations for sale require an import license and standard labelling according to
Key websites MOH - domestic regulations. Product registration is required only for specifically
Fresh eggs
JAKIM - controlled foods.
Animal and Birds Act, Sale of Food Act, Food Regulations
FSQD - The Food Act divides food into four categories Specifically Controlled
Processed eggs, Processed food, Food appliances Food, Standardized Food, Food Required to Bear Label, and General Food
Sale of Food Act, Food Regulations
Food laws: Specifically Controlled Food categories include:
Modified milk for infant and follow-up formula modified milk for infant
Malaysias Food Act 1983 and the Food Regulations of 1985 govern food and young children
safety and quality control, including food standards, food hygiene, food
imports and exports, food advertisements, and the accreditation of Infant food and follow-up formula food for infant and young children
laboratories. The Food Safety and Quality Division (FSQD) of the Ministry Supplementary foods for infant and young children
of Health (MOH) is charged with implementing and enforcing the law.
Sodium cyclamate and food containing sodium cyclate
Effective January 2015, import permits, phytosanitary certificates and pre-
shipment treatment is required for several commodities. More details are Food additives
available at the Department of Agriculture website: Weight-control foods
Foods or beverages in sealed containers
Flavoured milk, cultured milk, cows milk, ice cream, and other milk

Food Food Act Enforcement rules, Other regulations & rules
regulators regulators (Amendment Standards (Amendment date)
date) (Amendment date)
Vietnam Food The VFA under the Ministry of Health (MOH) is the Korea Customs The Korea Customs Service (KCS) is responsible for
Administration governing authority for food safety. However, it does not Service (KCS) ensuring that all necessary documentation, including Food Sanitation Enforcement Decree of Regulation on the Standards for the
(VFA) directly conduct food safety inspections. Instead, the VFA inspection results, is in place before the product is Act (8/4/2011) Food Sanitation Act Authorization of the Foreign Official
assigns other professional agencies, particularly state- released to the Korean importer/consignee from a Laboratories (5/17/2011)
Enforcement Rule of Food
owned agencies, to conduct food safety inspections bonded area. Guidelines for Inspection of Imported
Sanitation Act
Foods (11/8/2010)
Food inspection The MOH is responsible for import inspection of processed Quarantine Relevant quarantine inspection authorities must Food Code (2/3/2015)
Authorities inspection Standards on HACCP (9/19/2011)
foods, food additives, substances assisting food processing, check whether the imported product meets Korean
Ministry of authorities Food Additives Code
bottled water, mineral water, functional food, and other standards and regulations, and pass on inspection Overseas Manufacturing Facilities
Health (MOH) (3/27/2012) Inspection Standards for Registration
food in accordance with Government provisions results to KCS. Authorities include the Ministry of
Food and Drug Safety (MFDS), Animal and Plant Food Labelling Standards (8/31/2009)
The MOH has four inspection levels: dossier inspection,
Quarantine Agency (QIA), and the National Fishery (11/7/2011) The Guideline for Safety Assessment
simplified inspection, normal inspection, and intensive
Products Quality Management Service (NFQS) and Evaluation of Genetically
inspection Genetically Modified
Modified Foods (12/22/2009)
Foods Labelling Standards
Food inspection Products under the MOITs inspection jurisdiction include (8/24/2009) Standards on Using Manufacturing
Authorities wine, beer, soft drinks, processed milk, vegetable oil, cereals Facilities of Medicine to Manufacture
Ministry of and grains, starch, bread, jams, and candies Food Products (12/22/2009)
Industry and Standards on On-site Inspection of
Trade (MOIT) MOIT inspection is very similar to that of MOH, also having
Original Equipment Manufacturing
four levels of inspection: dossier inspection, simplified
(OEM) Products Overseas
inspection, normal inspection, and intensive inspection (10/15/2009)
Food inspection MARD is responsible for import inspection of cereals, meat Health Enforcement Decree of Guidelines for Inspection of Imported
Authorities and meat products, aquaculture and aquatic products, Functional Food Health Functional Food Act Health Functional Food (10/21/2010)
Ministry of vegetables, bulbs, fruits, eggs and egg products, fresh milk Act (3/31/2010)
Agriculture Enforcement Rule of Health Manufacturing Standards on Good
used as an input, honey and honey products, genetically
and Rural Functional Food Act Health Functional Food (8/24/2009)
modified foods, salt, and agricultural foods in accordance
Development Health Functional Food
with Government provisions Standards on Using Manufacturing
(MARD) Code (11/17/2011)
Facilities of Medicine to Manufacture
Regulation on Approval Functional Food Products
of Functional Ingredients (10/21/2010)
Food laws: and Standard for Health
Functional Food (7/8/2011)
The Law on Food Safety (FSL) entered into force on 1July 2011. The Law Health Functional Food
on Food Safety provides organisations and individuals with rights and Labelling Standards
obligations to ensure food safety. (5/11/2011)

According to the Law on Food Safety, all imported food, food additives, Special Act Nutritional Standards for Quality Certification Standards
on the Safety Foods with High-Calorie, Childrens Preferred Foods
substances used in food processing, tools and materials used for packing Control of Low Nutrition Value (9/21/2011)
and containing imported food shall be subject to state inspection for Childrens (8/24/2009)
food safety, except for cases where the state inspection of food safety is Dietary Life Standard on Designation of Good
(6/7/2011) Manufacturer for Childrens Health
exempted, in accordance with Government provisions.
Understanding Vietnamese laws and regulations concerning food can Regulation for Ban on the Sales
be a challenge. The confusion results from the lack of a unified food law. of Emotional Inhibition Food
The government relies on general laws to regulate the quality of goods, (7/17/2010)
including food. There are also specific regulations that apply these laws to
food products. This means that there are two sets of rules - one covering
goods in general and the other covering food products which often

Old wooden mills,

South Korea PAGE 6
Product registration prior to imports which is carried out under the authority of the primary food regulator.
This may not be applied to all food categories

FOR FOOD STEP 2 Multiple levels of documentation required to be furnished by the exporting country to get registration.
This may include facility or premises registration of the exporting company. This typically applies to meat

IMPORTS based products

IN EAST ASIA STEP 3 Additional approval by another government agency. At this stage the primary regulator refers to the other
body for specific categories, and this body then ratifies the food registration

Food imports can go through

STEP 4 Halal certification of animal derived products (including food, medicines and cosmetics)

some or all of the steps

below in East Asian markets,
depending upon each STEP 5 Notifying Customs in the importing country about the food import. For most countries this can be carried out
via online registration to notify of the pending import
countrys law. At each step
the product can potentially
be rejected, in which case it
is sent back to the country of
STEP 6 Sanitation checks upon entry into the country, and quarantine if applicable. A health certificate is required.
For most countries this step is applicable to high risk foods only, as defined by local law
origin. Most countries do not
allow dumping.
STEP 7 Customs clearance and issuance of import permit (license)

Each country has different focus areas pertaining to imports. Countries
such as Indonesia have a more complicated process for food registration.
Halal is mandatory in Malaysia. Indonesia is also moving towards
mandatory halal by 2019.

Country Steps Required Steps Required

Indonesia All steps required at Indonesia has been aiming for food sufficiency. President Joko
least for certain food Widodo has stated an aim for Indonesia to be self-sufficient in
categories food production in three years. This basically implies that food
import laws are complicated, and some of these processes can
Steps required for be construed as non-tariff barriers
processed food
imports are much According to exporters, one of the most difficult issues they
face is the requirement that all imported packaged food
products for retail must be registered through BPOM (these
registration requirements also apply for food produced locally)
Tariffs and import quotas exist for certain food categories
From 2019, all animal derived products (including food and
cosmetics) must be halal certified
Halal certification can be obtained from the port of origin
Typically food imports are done at two broad levels: 1)
registering the product and receiving recommendations from
the food regulator, and then 2) receiving the import permit

Malaysia Steps 4,5,6,7 required Halal certification standards are very stringent
at least for certain
Only health and medicinal foods need to be registered
food categories
Animal products need a veterinary health certificate and
horticultural products require phytosanitary certificates
Import permits and halal certification are necessary

Each country has different focus areas pertaining to imports. Japan, Korea and Each country has different focus areas pertaining to imports. Processed food import
Singapore have relatively strict food sanitation checking processes, although their processes are relatively simple for both the Philippines and Vietnam, as long as products are
overall import processes are much simpler classified as low risk. Thailands import laws require very strict labelling requirements

Country Steps Required Steps Required Country Steps Required Steps Required
South Steps 5, 6, 7 In Korea, no advance licences or registration are required to Vietnam Steps 1,2,5,6, 7 Companies must register for food safety inspection
Korea import food and beverage products into the country
Food inspection is Only some categories There are multiple government bodies MARD, MOIT and
quite stringent and Imported food and beverage products are subject to require registration MOH - each of which have separate jurisdiction for food
different agencies mandatory documentation and inspection requirements, inspection based on food categories
administered by relevant government agencies upon arrival in Each food product
inspect different Most meat categories require facilities inspection, and most
Korea. category undergoes
categories food categories require product registration
the inspection process
The Korea Customs Service (KCS) is responsible for ensuring
that all necessary documentation, including inspection results, As in most other East Asian countries, the import process for
is in place before the product is released to the Korean processed foods is much simpler
importer/consignee from a bonded area
Thailand Steps 1, 5, 6,7 for most Japan does not have a product registration system - however,
Japan Steps 5, 6, 7 Japan does not have a product registration system - however, food categories although the FDA website states that product registration is
imports must be cleared through a stringent sanitation check required only for specifically controlled food, in reality many
For specifically food categories require registration. Its advisable to seek
Imports of food and related products must be notified controlled food, help from a regulatory consultant, or get an understanding of
beforehand registration processes processes from the importer
can become
The notification form must contain a list of ingredients and a Imports of food for sale in Thailand require an import license
complicated and time-
processing outline, to be submitted to the Quarantine station and standard labelling according to domestic regulations.
of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare (MHLW). The consuming Product registration is required only for specifically controlled
Quarantine station determines if the product conforms to Only the General food foods
Japans Sanitation Law category does not A license is required for importing food for sale in Thailand.
Products that require sanitation are inspected on the spot, and require registration A licensee may import various kinds of food provided that
then samples are forwarded for a lab analysis the Office of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves
them. FDA inspectors will visit and confirm the suitability of
Singapore Steps 1,5,6, 7 All products imported into Singapore must be registered with the designated storage place or warehouse before licenses are
the AVA to obtain a traders license issued
Step 1 is fairly simple,
while step 5 is Importers are requested to withhold the sale of imported meat A license to import must be renewed every three years. The
extremely stringent. and poultry products until Singaporean authorities clear them license is held by the Thai importer
The regulator through physical examination and laboratory testing. This
immediately destroys process is strictly carried out, without exceptions Philippines Steps 1,2,5,6, 7 All imported products require a certificate of registration
any consignments Shipments that fail to meet Singapores food safety Some food categories Copies of the foreign agency agreement and certificates of
which fail to meet the standards are rejected and immediately destroyed under AVA require phytosanitary status of manufacture by exporting country are required, and
criteria supervision certificate and or must be ratified by the Philippines consulate
In Singapore, only food additives that have undergone health certificate Health certificates are required for fish based products, and
relevant risk assessments by the AVA are allowed for use in veterinary quarantine certificates required for meat and meat
food products based products
Singapore is very stringent on food safety matters. However, it Quarantine certificates serve as import licenses
maintains a generally liberal and open trade system


Food categories Responsibility of issuing and other steps

Health / safety All food imports Must state food is safe for consumption and distribution
To be issued by the responsible authority in country of origin

Halal certificate Not compulsory yet To be issued by approved halal certifier in country of origin
It is expected that from 2019, this will be required for all imported products List of approved certifiers is held by MUI (Majelis Ulama Indonesia) (http://mui.
(except pork)

Includes food additive products from an animal source

Product Required for all imported processed food, food raw materials, ingredients Registration is conducted by the local agent or importer
registration and additives
Exceptions - less than 7 days shelf life at room temperature, small
quantities, or for research and personal purposes
Firms that import duty paid alcoholic beverages must apply for an
imported alcoholic beverages permit through the Directorate-General of
Foreign Trade
According to exporters to Indonesia, one
Pre import Imports of speciality rice, such as rice for medicinal purposes Approval from Ministry of Trade based on recommendation from Ministry of
of the most difficult issues they face is the
approval agriculture
requirement that all imported packaged
food products for retail must be registered Pre import Required for all imported food additives Food additives reported to division of food certification, BPOM (after goods arrive
notification in harbour)
through BPOM (registration requirements Required for fresh horticultural products
also apply for food produced locally).
Certificate of Every import of food additives To be produced by the product plant or the responsible authority in the country of
Based on an amendment to food laws analysis origin
in 2014, halal certification is mandatory Phytosanitary All imported fresh horticultural products To be produced by the country of origin or country of transit, through specified
for most consumable animal-sourced Certificate seven ports
products, including food and beverages and
pharmaceutical products. The law will take
effect in 2019.

There are two kinds of registration Before importing:
Every importer in
assessments: 1. Find an importer or distributor with an importing license
Indonesia must hold
General Service the assessment of medium 2. Check the Indonesian list of HS codes (some products may need a certain license and registration for a
and high risk food products and food a General Import related institution)
additives, in accordance with the established License (API-U) or 3. Confirm a clear agreement with the importer or distributor
time and procedures.
Producer Import 4. Complete and provide all the supporting documents
Rapid Service the assessment of low risk
food products and food additives with
License (API-P)
a faster decision, in accordance with the

established time and procedures. Registration follows two kinds of assessment process:
1. General Service: the assessment of medium and high risk food products and food additives
2. Rapid Service: the assessment of low risk food products and food additives with a faster decision

During importing:
1. Notify the customs office that goods are arriving
2. Pay the duty or VAT (check the tariff)
3. Submit the Customs declaration form, payment evidence and required documents (will be provided by the importer)
4. Verification of documents from the Customs office

Processed Foods, Cosmetics and Drugs Horticultural products Meat and poultry imports

Pre application timeline requirements: Imports of horticulture products are allowed if permitted by the These products must go through a preregistration process with
Ministry of Trade under recommendation from the Ministry of the Indonesian Ministry of Agriculture (MOA)
At least 1/3 of the storage life for drugs, traditional medicines,
Agriculture, but only via designated points of entry
quasi-drugs, health supplements, and cosmetics Products can be only imported from facilities that the authorities
Registered importers of horticultural products must import 80% have individually audited and approved
At least 9 months before the expiry date for biological products
of the total allocation within a six month period
An Import Permission Certificate, issued by the Directorate-
At least 2/3 of the storage life for processed food
The final import volumes are determined by the Ministry of Trade General of Livestock Services (DGLS), must accompany every
(MOT) through Import Permits (SPI) import of poultry and meat. In a letter requesting the certificate,
the importer must indicate the product being imported, quantity,

STEP 1 In order to register the product, the in-market Chilli and shallot imports are subject to a reference price system
and destination
distributor must first perform an online
application on BPOMs website
before After getting an application reference number,
registering with
BPOM the distributor is required to do some lab tests
on the product, provide real samples, and
prepare documents STEP 1 All imported horticultural products require pre-
shipment inspection in the country of origin

These will be submitted to BPOM for a review Obtain

from BPOM
The importer must have an import approval
from BPOM for processed horticulture
STEP 1 The importer must get a recommendation
from the head of BPOM. For dairy products,
a Free Sale Certificate or Health Certificate
products Obtain
recommendation from the country of origin must be provided
Fresh horticultural products require good from BPOM to the importer in order to obtain the BPOM

STEP 2 Every item (SKU) of food and beverage

products, including wine sold in Indonesia
should obtain approval from BPOM
agricultural practices (GAP) certificate or farm
registration, and packing house registration,
prior to getting BPOM recommendation

letter from
Ministry of STEP 2 The MOA is responsible for issuing a letter of
recommendation (RTK) before the importer
can obtain an import permit (SPI) from the

Agriculture The importer obtains an Import
Get Ministry of Trade
Recommendation (RIPH) from the Directorate- recommendation
General of Processing and Marketing of letter from Imported raw meat only needs an RTK from
Obtain import Agricultural Products of the Ministry of Ministry of
the Ministry of Agriculture and an SPI from the

recommendation Agriculture
The importer obtains an import permit Agriculture for horticulture products Ministry of Trade
(SPI) from the Ministry of Trade

letter froa
Importer permit
m Ministry of
STEP 3 The importer obtains an import permit
(SPI) from the Ministry of Trade
STEP 3 The importer obtains an import permit
(SPI) from the Ministry of Trade

Agriculture Importer permit

Importer permit

Food categories Responsibility of issuing and other steps

PROCESS Pre import

Required for all imports This may include Information on materials, ingredients, and manufacturing methods

Inspection Meat, offal, processed meat, meat and eggs of poultry including ostriches Inspection certificates should be issued by the government of the exporting
certificate country
To be accompanied by information on manufacturing process, packing list or
invoice, etc (if required)

Phytosanitary Vegetables, fruits, nuts, oats, flour, beans, spices, coffee beans Phytosanitary certificates should be issued by the government of the exporting
certificate country
To be accompanied by information on manufacturing process, packing list or
invoice, etc (if required)
Anyone wishing to import food items
Quarantine Most food categories require quarantine certificates Plants and vegetables and fruits must undergo plant quarantine, and require an
into Japan for commercial purposes certificate original quarantine certificate during transport
must submit a food import notification
to the quarantine station, on each import
occasion. Each consignment goes through
a dedicated process of quarantine and
sanitation checks.
Although the overall import process appears
less complicated in comparison to other
East Asian markets, the food sanitation
check process is quite stringent however
the government plans to exempt overseas
companies that have obtained Hazard
Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP)
certification from some import procedures
regarding processed foods.
Food importers bear liability equivalent to
that of food producers and sellers in Japan.
Japan will not allow imports of meats from
certain prohibited countries, and even meat
that originates from a non-prohibited country
will be rejected if it has passed through a
prohibited country on its way to Japan. See
the regulations online here: http://www.
Imports of fresh fruits and
vegetables from some countries
are also prohibited, in accordance
with the Plant Protection Law.
The latest laws in this area can be
seen here:
The Japanese Government
prohibits imports of fresh fruit
and vegetables if there is soil
attached or evident, or if the
produces shows signs of
pests or pathogens.

Foreign countries
STEP 1 Importer submits an import notification (mandatory)
The notification form is submitted to a Quarantine Station
Submit import where the food sanitation inspectors carry out document
notification for all examination and inspection, to confirm the imported
foods and related
products products comply with the law

Processed products
(Bonded Area) Fruit and vegetables Meat and meat products
Fishery products
STEP 2 When the shipment arrives at a Japanese port, a Notice of Customs
Clearance on Foreign Posted Items (ie, an arrival notification) is sent to
the Customs office, and customs clearance is conducted
Postal cargo
import If the imported items are for sale or for use in business, an import
notification notification must be submitted to the quarantine station responsible for
the port where the posted cargo is temporarily stored
Imports for personal use are exempted
Plant quarantine Animal quarantine

OK OK STEP 3 The Notification Form is filled out providing all the required information.
Some food items, such as meat or meat products, require a sanitary
(health) certificate issued by the relevant government organisation in the
Import notification country of origin
form process
A. Food sanitation check Submissions can be made through an electronic information processing
B. Notifications and inspections check system is also available. To do this, importers must register their
computer terminal by applying and providing the necessary information
to the MHLW

Customs inspection
Customs duty, consumption tax

STEP 4 After notification the food sanitation inspector at the quarantine station
inspects the cargo to ensure compliance with the Food Laws
If the cargo is compliant with the law, a Certificate of Notification
Cargo inspection
at quarantine is provided to the importer from the quarantine station where the
station notification was first submitted. Cargo that has been judged non-
Disposal or return compliant cannot be imported into Japan
In order to expedite the procedures, simplified systems of import
notification are available. The quarantine stations also offer import
Domestic distribution

Food categories Responsibility of issuing and other steps

Product Not required

Phytosanitary Not required


Import license Most food imports (except for some processed foods, including honey) The licence must state that the food is safe for consumption and distribution
Documents should be provided by the responsible authority in the country of origin

OVERVIEW Halal certificate All meat and livestock products (except pork) - dairy is not included Issued by Department of Veterinary Services (DVS) and religious authorities
An Islamic Centre approved by JAKIM must supervise the slaughter and processing,
and issue the halal certificate for meat or poultry

Veterinary Dairy The veterinary certificate must be dated within 30 days of import
Each consignment of milk or milk products shall be accompanied by this certificate,
signed or endorsed by a competent veterinary officer of the government veterinary
The Malaysian Quarantine and Inspection authority in the country of origin
Services (MAQIS) issues import permits to
importers, exporter or agents. Certificate of Cheese Agents or importers must enclose the certificate of Health and Certificate of
Analysis and Analysis (confirming the absence of pathogenic bacteria Listeria monocytogenes)
Certificate of Seafood from the country of origin
Imports of meat and poultry are regulated
Health Seaweed
through licensing and sanitary controls. All
imported beef, lamb, and poultry products
must originate from facilities that have been
approved by Malaysian authorities as halal,
or acceptable for consumption by Muslims.
Quantitative import restrictions are rarely
imposed, except on a limited range of
products for protection of local industry or
for security reasons.
The Ministry of Health does not require
import permits. However, there are some
foods which require a Health Certificate,
Certificate of Analysis, License and Special
Approval for importation.

Registration of importers and/or agents STEP 1 The Food Safety Information System of Malaysia (FoSIM), set up in
2003, is a networked system that links up all entry points with the
Food Safety and Quality Division.
The Food
Safety To access FoSIM, all food importers or agents must register with the
Information Malaysian Ministry of Health to obtain an ID number and password
System of
Malaysia Arrival of consignment
(FoSIM), set
up in 2003, is
a networked
system that
STEP 2 Importers and agents must log on to FoSIM to give prior notice of
imports, or to check on the examination level of a particular food item

links up all
entry points Customs notification
with the Food
Safety and
Quality Division
STEP 3 For import notifications, importers or agents have to first declare their
imports through the Customs Information System, then log on to FoSIM
and complete the notification module

FoSIM inspection Level

STEP 4 Each import notification will be transmitted online to the authorised

officers of the Ministry of Health for action, which will be guided by the
examination level. The final decision will be transmitted electronically to
the importers or agents, and to Customs
Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5 Level 6
Automatic Document Monitoring Surveillance Hold, test, Automatic
clearance examination examination examination release rejection

Inspection action

STEP 1 Importer submits manufacturer
information for approval (veterinary
health certificate, source of ingredients)
STEP 1 Halal inspection and auditing by JAKIM, DVS
Malaysia, MPI New Zealand, and New Zealand
Halal Authority bodies accredited by JAKIM
Importers must submit a
quota application 3 months Each consignment must be
before the beginning of
each year, before making an accompanied by a valid import licence
application to import any
issued by the Department of Veterinary
Services Malaysia STEP 2 JAKIM and DVS issue clearance and list
the meat plant in their system

STEP 2 Importer receives the veterinary

health certificate STEP 3 Local importer submits their quota and
import permit application, to begin the
usual import process
Importer submits the documentation
for an import licence

STEP 3 Customs clearance, using the

veterinary health certificate and
import licence
First submission
1 to 3 months
Second submission
less than 2 weeks

Food categories Responsibility of issuing and other steps

Health / safety All agricultural and food products To be issued by the responsible authority in country of origin
All products must be accompanied by a phytosanitary or health certificate. This is
required to be submitted for inspection along with the import permit

Certificate Registration is conducted by local agent or importer
of product
registration The certificate is provided by the Philippine FDA

Veterinary Meat and meat products An accredited importer must obtain a Veterinary Quarantine Clearance (VQC)
Quarantine certificate prior to the importation of meat and meat products
(VQC) Issued by the Philippine BAI (Bureau of Animals)
The VQC is valid for 60 days from the date of issuance, during which time the meat
or meat products are to be shipped from the country of origin
Non-transferable - can only be used by the consignee to whom they were issued

Phytosanitary Fresh/ frozen horticulture Issued by the Bureau of Plant Industry (BPI). All imports of fresh and frozen
All processed food products, including quarantine produce require phytosanitary quarantine clearances (PQCs) which also serve as
clearances import licenses
food additives, food supplements
and bottled water, must be registered These permits are applied for by the accredited Philippine importer for each
to receive a Certificate of Product
Registration (CPR) from the FDAs Centre License to Processed foods The importer needs to secure a License to Operate (LTO) issued by the FDA this is
for Food Regulation and Research (CFRR) operate a prerequisite for the registration of any food product
before they are distributed, supplied, sold The LTO lists the names of foreign suppliers or sources of the products being
or offered for sale in the Philippines. registered. Importers will obtain this information from the exporter to submit the
necessary documents to the FDA
To streamline food product registration,
Certification of Meat and meat products For meat and meat products issued by BAI / NMIS
as of 3 September 2013 the CFRR no accreditation
longer requires samples, except for food Fresh fruits and vegetables For fresh fruits and vegetables issued by BPI
Tariff-Rate Quotas (TRQs) are still in place on
a number of sensitive products, such as corn,
poultry meat, pork, sugar and coffee.

Product registration is compulsory for all processed foods

LOW RISK FOODS AND RAW MATERIALS Imported and locally manufactured raw materials, ingredients and food additives which are intended to be
sold to retail or food service shall secure a certification of product registration (CPR) for each by the importer
The FDA is now implementing an Electronic Registration (E-Registration) or distributor. However, Local manufacturers who directly import and use raw materials, ingredients and food
System, for raw materials or ingredients and low risk pre-packaged additives for their own use or for further processing to manufacture a processed food product do not require
processed food products. Please refer to FDA Circular No. 2014-029 a CPR
Procedure for the Use of Electronic (E-registration) System for Raw
Multiple packaging sizes for the same product, or packaging with different artwork or suggested recipes for
Materials or Ingredients and Low Risk Pre-Packaged Processed Food
the same product, can be covered under a single issued CPR as long as the products have 1) the same brand
Products, prior to filing for registration.
name, 2) the same product or variant name, 3) the same product formulation or ingredients in the same order
of proportion, and 4) show the same label information except for net weight
The company should secure permission from the FDA through notification for any additional label design or
Obtain an FDA Account Send company authorisation and company contact details to other label changes prior to use in advertisements, promotions, and commercial distribution with CFRR: E-registration as subject
Should a product fail to meet the requirements for product registration, a Letter of Denial will be issued.
The applicant shall be given a maximum of six (6) months to comply and le for re-application
Access Online Portal When a CPR is granted to a food manufacturer or importer, all individual ingredients that are part of the
Access the online portal at Provide company specific username and password and click FDA-registered product formulation may be imported without a CPR. However, should the FDA-licensed food
Electronic Registration - Low Risk Food Product Registration manufacturer or importer use or source local ingredients and food additives, it shall only purchase from FDA-
(Initial Application Form) licensed establishments

CPR for low risk

Complete Form and Submit
The Electronic Registration (E-Registration) System is being implemented for raw materials or ingredients and
Read the Declaration before proceeding with the Provide the required information accurately and completely
low risk pre-packaged, processed food products:
application process

Pay CPR for medium risk

Pay the corresponding assessed fees through an FDA cashier, An Order of Payment will be received once required
Process Responsibility of issuing and other steps
or through any payment system prescribed by the FDA information is provided
Application form completed in full and notarised Initial Renewal, Renewal and Auto Renewal

Proof of payment of fees, as prescribed by current Initial Renewal, 5 years validity for Renewal and
Track FDA regulations Auto Renewal

Track the application through the Process Map If the application is denied, an electronic letter will be sent to Clear and complete loose labels or artworks of all packaging Initial Renewal and Renewal
the inbox of the account holder. Reapplications are treated as sizes, or equivalents as defined by the FDA
initial applications
For food supplements, a sample in actual commercial Initial Renewal
presentation shall be submitted

Issuance Documents to substantiate claims as applicable Initial Renewal

Secure Certificate of Product Registration at the Releasing If the application is approved, it will show in the Any required information to support amendments Renewal
Section of FDA E-Registration system as Releasing under tasks included in a renewal application (not applicable for
automatic renewal)

STEP 1 Determine whether food or agriculture products can enter the Philippines
Only acceptable countries as determined by the relevant regulatory body
Determine if the may export food and agriculture products to the Philippines
product can enter
the country

STEP 2 Only accredited and/or registered individuals or businesses may import food
products into the Philippines

Importers must obtain accreditation from the relevant Philippine regulatory
registration or bodies 1) License to Operate (LTO) from FDA for processed foods, 2)
accreditation Certificate of Accreditation from BAI/NMIS for meat and meat products and
3) Certificate of Accreditation from BPI for fresh fruits & vegetables

STEP 3 In the case of meat and poultry, imports can only be made from foreign
meat establishments (i.e. abattoirs or slaughterhouses) which are
accredited by the Department of Agriculture
Ensure for meat
and poultry, You can find a list of accredited laboratories in the Philippines at this link
that foreign -
establishments accredited-laboratories
are approved

STEP 43 Import licenses/permits must be obtained from the relevant regulatory

body for the goods to be imported to the Philippines, before the products
are shipped from the exporting countries
Issuance of import
permit Veterinary Quarantine Certificates (VQC) must be obtained from BAI, and
Import Permits (IP) from BPI, before importation
A Certificate of Product Registration (CPR) must be secured from the
FDA before initial importation these are initially valid for two years and
can be renewed every 5 years thereafter

STEP 5 All agricultural and food products entering the Philippines must be
accompanied by a phytosanitary or health certificate issued by the
regulatory body in the exporting country
Obtaining health
certificates for This is required to be submitted for inspection. along with the import
agricultural foods permit. to facilitate physical inspection of the goods and customs
clearance at the port of entry

A fine line exists between low risk and medium risk products. A food product within the same Although non-dairy beverages are low risk, all cocoa based products are classified as
product category can be classified as low risk or medium risk. Companies or their importers medium risk. Companies must check the processed fruits and vegetables, and meat
are advised to check with the Philippines FDA to confirm how products will be treated products categories carefully to understand if they are low risk or medium risk

1 LOW Foods that are unlikely to contain pathogenic

microorganisms and will not normally support their 2 MEDIUM Foods that may contain pathogens but will not normally
support their growth because of food characteristics OR

RISK growth because of food characteristics, and foods

that are unlikely to contain harmful chemicals RISK food that is unlikely to contain pathogens, but may support
the formation of toxins or the growth of pathogens

1 Fats, oils and fat emulsions

4 Cereal-based products derived from cereal
grains, roots and tubers, pulses, legumes and
A A. dairy products and analogues excluding fats, oils or
G Processed fish and fish products, including molluscs
and crustaceans
Butter oil, anhydrous milkfat, ghee
palm trees
condensed milk Smoked, dried, fermented, and/or salted
Vegetable oils and fats
Flours, starches (including soybean powder)
beverage whiteners Semi-preserved
Animal fats and our mixes
milk powder, cream powder and powder analogues Salmon substitutes, caviar and other sh roe products
Fat emulsions mainly of type oil-in-water Breakfast cereals
Fat emulsions mainly of type water-in-oil Pasta and noodles fresh, dried and pre
B Frozen desserts
H Egg and egg products
Fat-based desserts excluding dairy-based non-dairy based Preserved eggs
desserts Cereal and starch based desserts Egg-based desserts
edible ices
2 Processed fruits, vegetables and edible fungi
Pre-cooked or processed rice products C Processed fruits, vegetables and edible fungi I Bakery wares and bakery related products
Dehydrated fruits or vegetables Cakes, cookies, pies, pastries, doughnuts, sweet rolls,
tomato products
Jams, jellies, marmalades Soybean products (excluding soybean- scones, muffins, wafes plain or without lling
based seasonings and condiments) frozen fruits
Dehydrated vegetable protein products Frozen dough
fruit and vegetable preserves - canned or pasteurized or
Fruits or vegetables in vinegar, oil or brine 5 Confectionery
retort pouch, in juice, syrup, or brine
J Salt, spices, soups, sauces, salads and protein products
Fruit-based spreads Hard and soft candy, nougats, marzipans
fruit-based desserts, gelatin Soups and broths - ready-to-eat soups and broths,
Fruit preparations Chewing gum including canned, bottled and frozen
fermented fruit products
Cooked fruits Decorations
fruit llings for pastry Emulsied sauces and dips
Frozen vegetables, preparations of
vegetables and cooked vegetables 6 Processed meat and meat products, including
poultry and game
fermented vegetable products excluding soybean Non-emulsied sauces
sauces (low risk) Salads and sandwich spreads excluding cocoa and
(including mushrooms and fungi, roots
nut-based, spreads
and tubers, pulses and legumes, Aloe Vera,
seaweeds, and nuts and seeds)
7 Bakery wares and bakery related products vegetable protein products (canned and frozen)

D Confectionery - cocoa and chocolate products K Beverages

3 Beverages 8 Ready-to-eat savouries

cocoa mixes (powders) and cocoa mass cake Fruit and vegetable juices
Snacks - potato, cereal or
Non-alcoholic beverages coffee, coffee starch based cocoa mixes (syrups) Fruit and vegetable nectars
substitutes, tea, herbal infusions, and hot
Chicharon cocoa-based spreads, including llings Water-based avoured drinks carbonated, non-
carbonated and concentrates
Alcoholic beverages including alcohol-free Snacks fish based imitation chocolate, chocolate substitute products
and low alcohol counterparts
9 Salt, spices, soups, sauces, salads
E Cereal-based products L Food supplements, herbal food and herbal dietary
supplements vitamins and minerals, amino acids
and protein products (other than
fermented soybeans (e.g. natto, tempe)
from soybean marinades)
fermented soybean curd M Ready-to-eat savouries processed nuts, including
coated nuts and nut mixtures
10 Sweeteners, including honey
F Processed meat and meat products
processed meat, poultry and game products in whole
or cuts
processed comminuted meat, poultry and game
non-heat treated processed meat, poultry and game
products (cured, fermented, chilled)
Singapore imports up to 90-95% of its Food categories Responsibility of issuing and other steps
fresh food and food ingredients. The
government promotes imports and allows All food imports All products must originate from sources approved by AVA
the free import of food supplies and Meat products Overseas food establishments are required to apply for accreditation from AVA to export meat and meat
products. However, as a country renowned (Defined as products with more than 5% meat content.
products to Singapore
for food safety and hygiene, it has strict Note: products containing any amount of beef are For food products with less than 5% meat content, the overseas establishment does not need to be
regulatory regimes to ensure the safety considered to be meat) accredited by AVA, but it does need to be suitably regulated by the exporting countrys Competent
of food and food supplies that are being
imported. Processed eggs Competent authorities and establishments should seek AVAs accreditation for export of processed eggs to
Singapore, if the product comes in the following forms:
Singapores AVA inspects all imported
1) Powdered and pasteurised liquid eggs
primary produce, livestock and processed
food at ports of entry. In particular, it 2) Whole egg products
inspects every consignment of meat Fresh table eggs Competent authorities and farms are required to seek AVAs approval for export of fresh table hen eggs to
and poultry imports for wholesomeness Singapore
and freedom from disease, spoilage and
Live poultry Competent authorities and broiler farms should seek AVAs approval for export of live poultry (including
economic fraud, apart from documentary chickens and ducks) meant for slaughter and consumption into Singapore
Fish and fish products These can be exported to Singapore from any country - with the exception of high-risk products
AVA periodically updates its regulations to
take into account new products, new risks Fresh fruits and vegetables Can be imported from any country, as long as AVAs conditions are met. These conditions are:
and new scientific findings on pesticides and 1) Ensure the produce is safe to eat
other contaminants in food.
2) Ensure labels are accurate and complete
AVA takes strict action against importers 3) Obtain a phytosanitary certificate (consignments from the South American Tropics only)
who are found non-compliant with food laws.
All meat, meat products and egg imports Processed food and food appliances Can be imported from any country, as long as AVAs conditions are met. These conditions are:
must come from accredited processing
1) P
 roducts must be under proper supervision of the exporting countrys food authority, OR 2) Products
establishments located in approved must have a quality assurance program acceptable to AVA
countries. The relevant lists can be found
online at the AVA website. Food additives & ingredients All food additives and ingredients included must be confirmed as permitted by AVA

Livestock Can only be imported from Australia, Canada, France, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, and the United States
Livestock consignments must fulfil AVAs Veterinary Conditions
Special Slaughter Permits are required for animals to be slaughtered

STEP 1 Apply for a traders licence, or register
with AVA STEP 1 Certain food imports require inspection upon entering
Singapore. Find if the imports require AVA inspection by
checking the Cargo Clearance Permit (CCP) for the AVA
approval code (eg. A03, A04, A21) and conditional approval

STEP 2 Comply with the relevant food

Importers are advised to read the conditional approval
messages in their CCPs carefully, and comply fully with the
requirements indicated

STEP 3 Meet AVAs conditions for specific

types of food
STEP 2 All food consignments are subject to inspection. Some
samples may also be taken by AVA for laboratory analysis
In some cases, consignments may be placed on hold and
test. Such consignments cannot be released for sale or
distribution until they are found compliant with food laws

STEP 4 Satisfy AVAs labelling requirements

STEP 3 The following products are subject to mandatory inspection

which must be booked online beforehand through AVA
Inspection & Laboratory e-Services- animal and animal based

STEP 5 After meeting the above pre-import

requirements, you need to apply for
an import permit before bringing
(fresh and processed) products, processed foods and fresh
horticultural products
food products into Singapore

STEP 4 Documentation must be available for presentation to the AVA

inspector during the inspection including the CCP, any other
relevant documents (such as invoices and health certificates)
as well as the actual consignment of food for inspection

STEP 5 Consignments that fail to meet AVAs requirements cannot be

allowed to be sold or distributed in Singapore - importers must
return or dispose of them.Local disposal of the consignments is
not allowed
Depending on the nature of the non-compliance, the source
and/or exporter may be suspended from exporting to
Singapore. Importers of non-compliant products may also be
suspended from importing from these sources and/or exporters

Food categories Responsibility of issuing and other steps

Live animals, meat, fruit and vegetables and livestock Livestock products (including processed meat and dairy) should meet the standards and specifications set
out in the Manufacturing and Processing Standards and Specification of Livestock Products, and should be
inspected by the Ministry of Food & Drug Safety (MFDS). The Korean version can be found at their website Please note that an English version is not available

PROCESS Live animals, meat, and fruit and vegetables should be inspected by the Animal and Plant
Quarantine Agency English

Processed food and beverage Imported processed food and beverage products should meet the standards and specifications set out in
the Food Code, and should be inspected by the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS). An English
version of the Food Code can be found at their website English MFDS News
Relevant Rule Food Code.

Seafood Seafood products should be quarantined and inspected by the National Fishery Products Quality
Management Service English.

In Korea, no advance licence or registration

is required to import food and beverage

products into the country. However,
Port entry
imported F&B products are subject to
mandatory documentation and inspection

requirements administered by relevant
government agencies upon arrival. Bonded
CUSTOMS C/S (cargo)
The Korea Customs Service (KCS) is
responsible for ensuring that all necessary
documentation, including inspection results,
is in place before the product is released to
the Korean importer or consignee from the
(storage areas, bonded warehouse)

bonded area. CUSTOMS BROKER Import declaration (goods, payment, the price declaration
All new-to-market products are subject to
mandatory laboratory inspection. Subsequent
shipments of a product that has passed initial
CUSTOMS C/S (customs) Goods inspection
testing are eligible for much simpler and
shorter documentary or visual inspection (Items subject
to inspection)
however they can still be subject to
laboratory testing on a random basis. Inspection
In general, it takes 2-3 days for document
inspection, 3-5 days for sensory/visual
inspection, and 10-18 days for laboratory CUSTOMS
Screen Screening of
monitoring Documents submission
inspection by quarantine inspection
Screening for clearance (Including Taxation Audit
authorities, including MFDS, QIA and NFQS. conditions in Advance)
To receive a preliminary ruling on whether in advance
a food product can be imported into Korea
or not and whether the product meets
Clearance approval/
standards and specifications, acceptance of
a Korean importer can file an
Issuance of the
inquiry to these organisations. certificate of the
For instance, the following is the acceptance of
declaration (customs)
procedure for a definitive ruling by
the MFDS (which does not charge Post-clearance of Post-payment of
Goods release
tax payment tax screening
for this service):
The Korean inquirer should
submit a list of ingredients
(percentages), manufacturing
process, purpose of use, and
MFDS will reply in 7 working days PAGE 24
Tariffs and the New Zealand-Korea FTA
Korea utilizes a 10 digit Harmonized Tariff Code (HSK), and the Korea
Customs Service has an exclusive right to classify an imported product to a
Arrival at port Warehouse Import Report specific tariff code. Identifying the right HSK code, particularly for processed
food products, can be challenging.
To receive a preliminary ruling on the HSK code classification and check
import tariff rate, a Korean importer can file an inquiry to the Korea Customs
Service, following the procedure below:
(1) The Korean importer should provide a list of ingredients, their
Document review (2 days) includes: percentages and manufacturing process, 3 samples of the product,
Review of food import report, process flow, ingredients and 2 completed copies of the application forms.
Review of labelling (2) The Korea Customs Service will review the application and reply to the
Review of attachments and documents importer after 15 working days.
(3) Preliminary ruling inquiries cost approximately KW30,000 (NZ$40) each.
The New Zealand-Korea Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which is currently
pending ratification by the Korea National Assembly, will significantly reduce
tariffs on many New Zealand products imported into Korea. The proposed
FTA tariff table can be found at the following links:
Sensory Test (3 days) Laboratory Test (10 days) (in Korean and English)
- Sensory test - Random Sampling Test (5 days)
Be aware that taxes other than import duty can be imposed on food
- Check consignment information
products. For instance, the following duties and taxes are imposed on wine
- Whether labelling misleads consumer imports:
- Storage temperature and conditiion
Import duty: 15% of CIF value
Liquor tax: 30% of the gross value (CIF value + import duty)
Education tax: 10% of liquor tax
Value-added tax: 10% x (CIF value + import duty + liquor tax +
education tax)
Total: 68% of CIF value

Conform Reject

Market release Return or discard

Types of documents/ steps required Procedure for Pre-Marketing Approval
Control of food importation A license is required for importing food for
sale in Thailand. A licensee may import various kinds of food provided that


the Office of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approves them. FDA
inspectors will visit and confirm the suitability of the designated storage
place or warehouse before licenses are issued. The license to import is held

by the Thai importing company and must be renewed every three years. Preparing Document
Control of food labeling Imported food products, which are categorized
as specifically controlled food, standardized food, and food required to

bear labels, are required to bear standard labels. A Thai language label
must be applied where needed prior to entry. Stick-on labels meeting local PRE-MARKETING CONTROL
Premise Product Advertisement
requirements may be affixed. Document Document Document
Failure to apply labels before entry will lead to product seizure by the Thai Premise Approval
FDA. The approved label, corresponding to its food package size, must be Premise
applied to every single item of food there is no exemption allowing a Thai License
language label only on the main outer package for industrial containers or Product Document
Thailands food industry is governed by distribution purposes. Notification
the Food Act of B.E. 2522 (1979) and & Registration
Pre appointment For product registrations, applicants need to book an number
subsequent laws stipulated by the Ministry Advertisement
appointment online at http://iodinethailand.Fda.Moph.Go.Th/foodbooking/ Document Approval
of Health. Imports of food for sale in Advertisement
before submitting the forms and required documents to the Thai FDA.
Thailand require an import license and Production Number
standard labelling according to domestic
Product in
Although the FDA website states that Advertisement
the Market
product registration is required only for
specifically controlled food, in reality many
food categories require registration. Its Consumer
advisable to seek help from a regulatory PRODUCTION

consultant or get an understanding of

processes from the importer.

Procedure for Pre-Marketing Approval


PROCESS MAP 1. Import licence (for every food group)

Customs Checkpoint FDA

FOR IMPORTS Initial Approved

Licensing, Labeling or Other Documents*

Screening Test
(Test Kits for Aflatoxins, Pesticides,
* e.g. Health Certificate, GMP Certificate
Sulfide, Nitrate/Nitrite, Microbial)

Document Registration

Permit Not Permit

Pay Fee

Prohibit import Seize Release to market Seize

2. Product Registration (Except Food Group 4: General Food)


Document Confirm Testing by
Initial Approved Prosecution No Prosecution

Document Registration

Permit Not Permit

Prohibit import Retain to Confinement Release to market

Product Serial Number

It is advisable to check with an importer A fine line exists between low risk and medium risk
or registration consultant to ensure the products. A food product within the same product
import license is applied for under the category can be classified as low risk or medium risk.
correct product category Companies or their importers are advised to check with the
Thai FDA to confirm how products will be treated

STEP 1 Importer requires an appropriate license
to import food

General Food Food Required to Bear Label Standardized Food Specifically Controlled Food

STEP 2 Food registration approval, according

to food categories. Only general foods
dont require registration
4.1 Animals and their products such as
fresh meat, fresh seafood, eggs
4.2 Plants and their products such as
Special purpose foods
Irradiated foods
2.2 Tea
Electrolyte drinks 1.1. Modified milk for infants and follow-
up formula modified milk for infants
and young children
3.3 General food obtained through 2.3 Semi-processed food
fresh vegetables, fresh fruits, nuts 1.2. Infant food and follow-up formula
certain techniques of genetic
2.4 Coffee food for infants and young children
4.3 Extracts/ synthetic substances modification/genetic engineering

such as herbal extract used as raw 2.5 Soybean milk in sealed containers 1.3. Supplementary foods for infants and
Labels can be in any language - however 3.4 Processed gelatin and jelly
materials 2.6 Ice young children
a Thai language label is mandatory (this 3.5 Chewing gum and candy
can be stick-on) 4.4 Nutrients such as Amino acid used as 2.7 Drinking water in sealed containers 1.4. Sodium cyclamate and food
raw materials 3.6 Bread containing sodium cyclate
2.8 Natural mineral water
4.5 Flour and products such as cassava 3.7 Sauces in sealed containers 1.5. Food additives
flour, mung bean noodle, noodle 2.9 Peanut oil
3.8 Brine for cooking 1.6. Weight-control foods

STEP 4 Companies must register for food safety

4.6 Other not-ready-to-eat products for
4.7 Seasonings such as seasoning packs
3.9 Husked rice flour
3.10 Meat products
2.10 Coconut oil
2.11 Palm oil
2.12 Fat and oil
1.7. Beverages in sealed containers
1.8. Foods in sealed containers
in instant noodles 3.11 Flavouring agent 1.9. Flavoured milk
2.13 Butter oil
4.8 Sugar 3.12 Ready-to-cook and ready-to-eat 1.10. Cultured milk

STEP 5 GMP Certificates may be required for foods 2.14 Butter

4.9 Spices such as mustard, pepper, red 1.11. Cows milk
certain categories 3.13 Garlic products 2.15 Cheese
pepper 1.12. Other milk products
2.16 Margarine
1.13. Ice cream
2.17 Ghee
2.18 Iodized table salt

STEP 6 Samples taken for screening tests for

certain categories
2.19 Vitamin fortified rice
2.20 Alkaline-preserved eggs
2.21 Cream
2.22 Chocolate
2.23 Some types of sauces
2.24 Vinegar
2.25 Fish sauce
2.26 Honey
2.27 Food seasonings derived from
the hydrolysis or fermentation of
soybean protein
2.28 Jam, jelly, and marmalade in sealed
2.29 Royal jelly and royal jelly products

Requirements Estimated Length of Time in Costs/ Fees in Each Process
the Process
Specifically 1. Import license 30 days for import license 15,000 baht for license
90-120 days for registration
2. Product 5,000 baht for registration
Registration Importer prepares the label -
FDA monitors
3. Standard labelling
4. Other labelling
may be required,
such as nutrition
labelling or GMO
Standardized 5. Import license 30 days 2,000 baht
4-7 days
6. Standard labelling Free
Importer prepares the label -
7. Other labelling FDA monitors
may be required,
such as nutrition
labelling or GMO
Food required to 8. Import license 30 days 2,000 baht
bear label
5-30 days
9. Standard labelling Free
Importer prepares the label -
10. Other labelling FDA monitors
may be required,
such as nutrition
labelling or GMO
General 11. Import license 30 days 2,000 baht
Importer prepares the label -
12. Other labelling
FDA monitors
may be required,
such as nutrition
labelling or GMO

Structure of regulators



IMPORT PROCESS Alcohol, beer

Soft drinks
Food additives
Bottled drinking water
Meat and meat products

Specialised Specialised
Processed milk inspection Natural mineral water inspection Fisheries and fishery
Vegetable oil Functional foods products
Products of processed Vegetables
powder and starches Eggs and egg products
Fresh milk
Honey and honey products
Genetically modified foods
Primary produce of
Pre-import requirements agriculture, fishery and
For products of animal origin Vietnams Circular 25
requires producers of food of animal origin to provide
extensive information on their individual facilities,
including proprietary information, in order for foods
produced in those facilities to remain eligible for
export to Vietnam.
Register foods (for some categories)
For products of plant origin in December 2013, Register facilities (for some categories)
Vietnams National Assembly passed a new Plant
Health Law updating overall guidance on the issues
of plant health quarantine, pesticide regulation,
and import and export of plant origin products. Notify Vietnamese Customs
The law and its subsequent guiding decrees and
circulars entered into force on January 1, 2015. There
appears to be a lack of science-based justification
and transparency by Vietnams regulatory authority OR
with respect to requirements for government-
issued phytosanitary certification or equivalents for
products of plant origin.
Priority Live animals, plants, highly
VFA under the Vietnamese Ministry of Health (MOH) perishable goods, or other special
is the governing authority for food safety. However, goods shall be prioritised for Customs
VFA does not directly conduct food inspection. Importers must make a Normal
safety inspections. Instead, VFA customs declaration before the date that
the commodities arrive at the border
assigns other professional agencies, checkpoint, or within thirty (30) days
particularly state-owned agencies, to from the date on which the commodities
conduct food safety inspections. arrive at the border checkpoint
A list of the agencies assigned to
conduct food safety inspection on
VFAs behalf is provided in Appendix III of Strict inspection
this report. MOHs decision on assignment OR
of an inspection body is valid for a specified Normal inspection
period, currently 5 years - importers should Check what category of inspection will be OR
contact the regulatory agencies for details. carried out for the food import
Light inspection
File checking only
Release to market
If the inspection result indicates that the goods
satisfy import requirements, the Sub-Department
of Customs at the checkpoint will determine
Customs clearance of goods as prescribed

VIETNAM STEP 1 Meat and meat product food business operators (FBOs) must be
approved by the Vietnamese Competent Authorities to be fully

compliant with food hygiene and safety regulations, in order to
export foodstuffs of animal origin to Vietnam

FOR IMPORTS STEP 2 Non processed meat and meat imports require registration by each
individual company that wishes to export to Vietnam, including a
list of products exported and examples from the establishments
HACCP plans

Step 1 is only applicable to:

STEP 3 Prior to import, processed foods require prior notification,
and registration for the Announcement on Conformity with
Technical Regulations
Meat and meat products Documents to be provided are: product specifications, product
Edible animal offal label, samples, copy of the business registration certificate,
Certificates of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), Hazard
Eggs and egg products
Analysis and System Critical Control Point (HACCP), and
Raw milk Certificate of Free Sale or Health Certificate

Other products of animal origin for human consumption
(i.e. fat, edible birds nests)
STEP 4 Companies must register for food safety inspection

Companies importing live animals or seafood may be

subject to further stringent requirements

STEP 5 Companies must have a Certificate of Satisfaction of Food Hygiene

and Safety Requirements issued by the Vietnamese Ministry
of Health (MOH). As of the date that food materials and food
additives are imported, the product expiration date must be over
two-thirds of the total useful life as inscribed on the label. Foods
must be examined by the MOH

STEP 6 Imported food can only be distributed and sold after the importer
receives either a Certificate of Import Qualification, or a Certificate
of File Examination Only
The MOH must issue a receipt within three days after receiving
the dossier for registration of examination, so that the importer is
permitted to carry out the customs clearance process. Afterwards, the
MOH examines the imported foods, to determine whether to issue a
Certificate of Satisfaction of Food Hygiene and Safety Requirements

Product registration is compulsory in
Vietnam, and products are inspected
at various levels of scrutiny as below. 1 LOW According to Vietnams Ordinance on Food Hygiene and Safety, replaced by the Law on Food
Safety in 2010, foods were divided into two categories: high-risk and low-risk (see paragraph
of Intensive inspection below for details of high-risk food). Foods not defined as high-risk may

apply for simplified inspection. The types of foods eligible for simplified inspection may be
defined more clearly in future ordinances, since the draft of the Circular
Simplified Simplified inspection: At this level, imported food products are inspected visually in replacement of Decision 23 proposes more details for definition of these cases
inspection without sample testing. For products to be entitled to this level of inspection, the
following conditions must be satisfied:
Food classified as low risk, or carrying marks indicating conformity with

recognised product standards (eg GMP, HACCP)
Food of the same type and origin showing stable quality in at least two previous Meat and Edible aquatic life Fresh fruit Functional food
consecutive inspections, or verified in writing by MOH as food eligible for meat products (i.e. seafood) and vegetables Nutrient-fortified
simplified inspection Milk and dairy Frozen food Ice cream food

Food of the same type and origin as products which have already been sampled products Soy milk and Ice water Food additives
and passed inspection Eggs soybean products Natural water Instant food
Food inspected before import or tested by a third party in the country of and beverages
manufacture (testing results must be available)
Food listed and/or published by the General Department of Standardization,
Measurement and Quality Control of Vietnams Ministry of Science and
Technology as bearing standard conformity stamps from recognized export

countries, or regional trade/common market blocs
Certain horticultural products and products of animal origin can
For food not listed and/or published as above, food that is verified in writing be subject to quarantine at the point of import. The MARD is
by the MOH and the General Department of Standardization, Measurement
responsible for maintaining two lists of terrestrial animals and

and Quality Control as bearing standard conformity stamps of countries of
exportation or the regional common market bloc food of animal origin, indicating products that are either subject
to or exempted from quarantine.
Normal Normal inspection: Samples are taken on a random basis for visual inspection.
Inspection Laboratory testing shall also be applied, but only within a limited scope. Usually,
samples are tested for indicator criteria of safety and quality, such as total
bacteria count

Intensive Intensive inspection: Samples are taken for laboratory testing, on a random basis
inspection or due to suspicions raised. Samples are taken in a sufficient minimum quantity and
undergo a comprehensive food safety assessment.
Foods with the following characteristics are subject to this strictest level
of inspection:
High-risk food (i.e. meat and meat products, milk and dairy products, eggs,
seafood, ice cream, ice water, natural water, functional food, nutrient-fortified
food, food additives, instant food and beverages, frozen food, soy milk and
soybean products, and fresh fruit and vegetables) that has been exposed
to risk of contamination due to damaged or leaking packages, cold-storage
malfunction during transport, or the like
Food imported from manufacturers located in areas where raw materials have
been contaminated, or where raw materials are at risk of contamination from
pathogens harmful to humans
Food where previous consignments of the same product have failed to comply
with import requirements
In other cases, where intensive inspection is required at the request of MOH

Country Licence Owner Country Licence Owner

Indonesia For foods and drugs, the local importer needs to apply on a per import Indonesia The registration number is valid for five years and must be renewed before expiry.
basis. The registration process should be conducted by a local agent or The time taken to complete the registration process also significantly varies up to
importer. six months, although some cases can take longer.

Timeline for Food Registration Approval Timeline (Maximum)

Japan Most goods do not require an import licence and can be imported freely. in BPOM Type of Foods
Japanese import licences are required for certain goods, including Food for Specific Purposes 150 working days
hazardous materials, animals, plants, perishables, and in some cases Functional Foods, Foods with claims, 120 working days
articles of high value. Restricted items require the Japanese importer to Foods with herbal (contains plant for
apply for license approval. medical purpose)
Irradiated Foods, GMO, Food Additives 100 working days
(Flavours), Organic Foods, Milk and
Malaysia Dairy and related: Local importer Milk Products, Fish and Fish Products,
Honey and fruit and vegetables: Local importer Alcoholic Beverages
Food Additives, other Flavours, Other 60 working days
types of Foods
Philippines It is the responsibility of the importer in the Philippines to ensure that any
product entering the country is in full compliance with Philippine health
and phytosanitary regulations. Malaysia Dairy and related:
1st submission 1 to 3 months
2nd submission less than 2 weeks
Singapore The importer or consignee needs to apply for a registration number
with the Quarantine and Inspection department (QID) of the Agri-food Liquid milk is subject to milk quotas. The importer must make a
and Veterinary Authority of Singapore (AVA), if they intend to import submission for quota application three months before the beginning
processed food products and food appliances. of each year.
Honey and fruit and vegetables: 1 week for each consignment

South Korea The South Korean importer or consignee owns any import licenses. In Meat: Registration for meat can be lengthy, since halal requirements are strict
most cases, they will hire registered customs brokers to handle the import
Philippines Based on the Philippines FDA charter, the procedure should only take 114 calendar
clearance process. days - in reality it can often take 6-8 months.

Thailand Importing food for sale in Thailand requires a license for importing, to be
held by the Thai importing company. A licensee may import various kinds South Korea In general, it takes 2-3 days for document inspection, 3-5 days for sensory/visual
inspection, and 10-18 days for laboratory inspection, by quarantine inspection
of food provided that the office of food and drug administration (FDA) authorities such as MFDS, QIA and NFQS.
approves them. FDA inspectors will visit and examine the appropriateness
of the designated storage place or warehouse before a license is issued. Thailand Import License issuing takes 30 days.
Licenses to import must be renewed every three years. Product registration for specially controlled foods can take 90 120 days
Import licenses are valid for three years.
Vietnam Product registration in Vietnam takes 3-6 months.

Contact type Name of company Contact details Contact type Name of company Contact details
MUI-approved Al Kautsar Halal Food 532 Massey Road, Mangere, Auckland 2022 Trade and JETRO https//
halal body in and Inspection (AL Telephone: +64 9 257 2436 investment
New Zealand KAHFI) organisation
Fax: +64 9 257 2433
can assist with
Email: regulatory affairs
Regulatory MIPRO
MUI-approved The Federation of 7-11 Queens Drive, Lyall Bay, Wellington for food and
halal body in Islamic Association Postal address: PO Box 1415, Wellington New Zealand beverage
New Zealand of New Zealand, Inc. Telephone: +64 4 387 8023
(FIANZ) Fax: +64 4 387 8024

Contact Person: Asif Koya

Halal body APHSNZ (Asia Pacific Prime Property House, Level 2, 2 Woodward Street,
recognised for Halal Service New Wellington 6142 New Zealand
food processing Zealand) Postal address: PO Box 11645, Wellington 6142 New Zealand
(industrial Telephone: + 64 4 473 4675
only, not retail Email: or
products), such Fax: + 64 4 473 4674
as cheese, dairy Contact: Mr Mohamud Mohamed Contact type Name of company Contact details
Mobile: + 64 212 376 571
cosmetics Food and Department Of
beverage related Veterinary Sciences
contacts - (DVS)
MUI-approved Tilleke & Gibbins Telephone: +62 21 2971 8099 International Islamic approved-islamic-bodies
halal body in E-mail: Bodies Recognised by
New Zealand Website: JAKIM
Contact: Somboon Earterasarun
Federal Agriculture
and Marketing
Authority (FAMA)

Regulatory Kagayaku Logistics

consultants Malaysia malaysia/export-import-consulting-malaysia/
for food and
beverage SGS (Malaysia) Sdn.
Bhd Pharmaceutical-Services/Clinical-

Regulatory Services

Contact type Name of company Contact details Contact type Name of company Contact details
Regulatory Kittelson and Carpo 21-B Rufino Pacific Tower, 6784 Ayala Avenue Product FBNC Business Scope:
consultants corner Rufino St., Makati City, Philippines 1226 development/ Business Consulting Services (New Product Development
for food and product
Telephone: +632 224 1833 and Food Regulatory)
beverage localisation labs
Mobile: +63 998-962-0430 or consultants Foods and Food Ingredients Supply (International Trading)
Note: In the Email: Address: Room 1308, 13, Seoun-ro, Seocho-gu, Seoul, Korea
Philippines, there
Telephone: +82 10 3266 7094
do not seem Casiding Law Office Suite 2303, 23rd Floor, Herrera Tower, 98
to be product Fax: +82 2 3471 7094
V.A. Rufino corner Valero Street, Makati City,
development Email:
labs. Normally, Philippines
Contact: Mr Young Suk Huh, President
labs are for food Telephone: +63 625-0603
microbiological Fax: +63 511 8335
or content Website: Aromaline Business Scope:
testing and Flavour Manufacturing and Supply
analysis Triplei Consulting 12F Sagittarius Building, 111, H.V. Dela Costa New Product Development Services
Street Salcedo Village, Makati City 1227 Address: Room 413, 234, Galmachi-ro, Joongwon-gu, Sungnam-
Telephone: +63 25519012, +63 905 313 0064 si, Kyonggi-do, Korea
Fax: +63 2 551 8052 Telephone: +82 31 734 7744
Email: Fax: +82 31 734 7747
Contact: Mr Jae-Soon Oh

SINGAPORE Regulatory
Azra Co., Ltd Address: 8F, Morning Tower B/D, 736-41, Yeoksam-dong,
Kangnam-gu, Seoul, Korea
Telephone: +82 2 562 8889
Fax: +82 2 562 8872
Contact: Ms Minyoung Lee, Director

Contact type Name of company Contact details FBNC See above

Regulatory SGS Singapore -

consultants Regulatory Affairs Food One Tech Address: Room 906, Woorim Lions Valley 2-cha, Gasan Digital
and Consulting - Life 1-ro 2, Geumcheon-gu, Seoul, Korea
Sciences Telephone: +82 2 784 7442
Fax: + 82 2 2027 3161
Ador Consulting
regulatory affairs Website: (Korean language only)
service provider) Contact: Dr. Won-Taek Oh, President

Contact type Name of company Contact details
Product Institute of Food
development Research and Product
consultants Development

Institute of Nutrition,

Mahidol University

National Food Institute


Regulatory DKSH (Healthcare

consultants Division)

Tilleke & Gibbins

International Ltd

GIS Pharma Limited Email:


Professional Expert


Chommatat Sombut

Law Office

Contact type Name of company Contact details
Regulatory Tilleke & Gibbins
affairs International Ltd
ANT Lawyers


Copyright New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) 2016

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This document only contains general information and is not formal advice. It is
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ISBN 978-0-908344-59-8