// The UK will launch phased border checks on food products in the Irish Sea from October
// The BRC said details of the new system are contained in a Northern Ireland Protocol roadmap
// The checks will be phased in over four stages from October
The UK is planning on introducing phased border checks on food products in the Irish Sea from October.
The BRC said details of the new system are contained in a Northern Ireland Protocol roadmap and will be phased in over four stages from October.
The document states that the first phase will cover fresh meat products being moved from the rest of the UK and Northern Ireland, with the second phase coming in at the end of January 2022 covering dairy products, plants and wine.
Phases three and four would cover fruit and vegetable marketing standards, pet food, organic and composite products.
No date has been given as to when those checks will come in.
The document was sent to the EU by the UK in March after the UK delayed implementing border processes agreed in the Brexit deal without the union’s backing.
The sea border contained in the deal has been the biggest practical challenge, with Northern Ireland having remained part of the EU’s single market for goods while the rest of the UK has left.
There are also no target dates set out in the document for the construction of permanent border-control posts at Northern Ireland’s ports.
“We have always argued for a long-term pragmatic approach to checks and paperwork on food moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland – one that recognises the need for EU import controls but does not add unnecessary bureaucracy and costs, reducing choice for Northern Ireland consumers,” BRC food and sustainability director Andrew Opie said.
“EU and UK officials should urgently sit down with the major supermarkets to understand the issues and agree robust and practical controls, which work for households across NI.”