Animal by-products and food waste

Transporting animal by-products


You must collect and transport animal by-products in leak-proof, closed containers or sealed new packaging.

You must keep each category of by-product separate and clearly labelled to avoid contamination. See animal by-product categories.

Who can transport animal by-products

You must ensure that anyone removing your waste is authorised to do so. There is a two-tier registration system for waste carriers.

If your carrier only transports animal by-products they should be registered as a lower tier waste carrier. If the carrier transports other types of waste, as well as animal by-products, they must be registered as an upper tier waste carrier with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA). Register or renew as a waste carrier or broker in Northern Ireland. You should ask for proof - such as a certificate or letter of registration - that an individual or business is authorised to handle or transport your waste. 

Animal by-product transportation documents

All movements of animal by-products, except manure, must be accompanied by a commercial document. This is different from a waste transfer note or hazardous waste consignment note.

The commercial document should include:

  • a record of the origin and quantity of the material
  • a description of the material, including the animal by-product category
  • the date of transport
  • the name and address of the carrier and receiver
  • if the animal by-product is to be used for composting or pet food
  • any approval numbers showing that the animal by-product has been treated and is therefore safe to be used

If you export animal by-products or send them to be processed into pet food, you may also need a health certificate from your local Divisional Veterinary Office.

All original documents should accompany the animal by-products during transit. The receiver of the animal by-products must keep the original documents. The waste producer and the waste carrier must keep copies. You must keep all records for at least two years.

Loading and unloading animal by-products

Some loading and unloading should only be done inside a building. This includes loading and unloading slaughter and butchery waste, and tipping animal by-products onto the floor or into a hopper.

If loading and unloading inside is not possible, you may be able to 'dock' your vehicle with the building and transfer animal by-products under cover directly to or from the building. This is acceptable when loading intact animal carcasses.

You may get permission to unload certain animal by-products in outside yards in very limited and tightly controlled circumstances.