Importing CAP goods

Import procedures for Common Agricultural Policy goods

Before you can import Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) goods into the UK:

For each import, you must:

  • check whether the goods require a CAP licence
  • check any specific procedures for the goods
  • apply for an import licence
  • deposit the required security with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) or the RPA
  • import some or all of the goods
  • declare the import, either electronically via the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system, or on form C88, the Single Administrative Document (SAD)
  • record how much was imported against the licence once goods are declared for free circulation (attributions), and show the remaining balance
  • submit the licence to customs if you have a paper licence
  • make further imports to use up any quantity remaining on your licence within the time limit specified

If your import licence is approved, it will be issued, usually electronically, within five working days of receipt of your application. For paper licences, Customs will endorse the attributions on your licence and return the documents as soon as all import procedures have been completed.

When you complete the SAD you must put the following in box 44, which describes additional documents accompanying your customs declaration:

  • the identifier of your CAP import licence
  • the expiry date of your licence
  • the country prefix
  • the number shown in box 25 of your licence
  • the date of issue of your licence

You don't need a security deposit when you apply for your licence if the amount comes to less than €100, and in some circumstances, less than €500. Your security will be returned when:

  • your goods have been imported
  • customs have confirmed that the licence has been fully used, surrendered, or expired
  • you have met any proof requirements specified in the licence

Transferring a licence

If you want to transfer a licence you must contact the RPA who will advise if this is permissible and if necessary transmit the details of the transfer to CHIEF.

Imports of CAP goods by post

Procedures for CAP goods imported by post are covered in volume 3 part 3 of the Tariff. For consignments exceeding £2,000 in value you must complete a formal declaration on SAD, which will be sent to you from the Postal Depot.