Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards

An Expert's View about Agriculture and Animal Husbandry in Mexico

Posted on: 30 Jan 2012

This report identifies current export certificates to comply with Mexican import standards and regulations.

THIS REPORT CONTAINS ASSESSMENTS OF COMMODITY AND TRADE ISSUES MADE BY USDA STAFF AND NOT NECESSARILY STATEMENTS OF OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT POLICY Required Report - public distribution Date: 12/21/2011 GAIN Report Number: MX1529 Mexico Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards - Certification FAIRS Export Certificate Report Approved By: Adam Branson Prepared By: Eduardo Lozano C. Report Highlights: This report identifies current export certificates issued by the competent United States government agencies, to comply with Mexican import standards and regulations or to attest that the corresponding products are subject to U.S. regulations. This report is intended as a supplement to the Food and Agricultural Importation Regulations Report (FAIRS), report number MX0344, and as an update to the FAIRS Export Certificate Report submitted on January 10, 2010. Section I. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY This report was prepared by the Agricultural Trade Office of the Foreign Agricultural Service in Monterrey, Mexico. This report provides U.S. exporters with updated information on current certificates, issued by government agencies of the United States, required by Mexican authorities in order to export food and agricultural products into Mexico. While every possible care was taken in the preparation of this report, information provided may not be completely accurate either because policies have changed since its preparation, or because clear and consistent information about these policies was not available. It is highly recommended that U.S. exporters verify the full set of import requirements with their foreign customers, who are normally best equipped to research such matters with local authorities, before any goods are shipped. FINAL IMPORT APPROVAL OF ANY PRODUCT IS SUBJECT TO THE IMPORTING COUNTRY'S RULES AND REGULATIONS AS INTERPRETED BY MEXICAN BORDER OFFICIALS AT THE TIME OF PRODUCT ENTRY. List of All Export Certificates Required By Government (Matrix) : T Requesting itle of Certificate Purpose Product Ministry All products NAFTA Certificate of Origin Origin of Customs product Meat and Poultry Products FSIS Meat and Poultry Export Certificate of Health Secretariat of Agriculture Wholesomeness certificate (SAGARPA) Dairy Products APHIS Health Certificate Health Secretariat of Agriculture Certificate (SAGARPA) Hatching Eggs APHIS Certificate For Poultry or Hatching Eggs Health Secretariat of Agriculture for Export Certificate (SAGARPA) Live Animals International Health Certificate Health Secretariat of Agriculture Certificate (SAGARPA) Fish and Processed Fish Products Export Health Certificate and Certificate of Health Federal Commission for the Origin Certificate Protection (NOAA / National Marine Fisheries Service) Against Sanitary Risk (COFEPRIS) / Secretariat of Health Crustaceans: Lobster. King Crab, Export Health Certificate and Certificate of Health Secretariat of Agriculture Crayfish, Shrimp (Frozen Raw) Origin Certificate (SAGARPA) (NOAA / National Marine Fisheries Service) Wood products and processed Phytosanitary Certificate- Plant Protection and Health Secretary of Environment wood products Quarantine certificate and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) Plant and plant products – fruits Phytosanitary Certificate- Plant Protection and Health Secretariat of Agriculture and vegetables Quarantine certificate (SAGARPA) Animal Feed and Pet Food Certificate of Free Sale Health Secretariat of Agriculture (containing animal inputs) APHIS Health Certificate Certificate (SAGARPA) **Note: Feed with no animal content does not require APHIS certificate Grocery Food Items, Frozen Foods Certificate of Free Sale Health COFEPRIS- Federal *Harmonized Tariff Schedule defines type of certificate Commission for Protection document required Against Sanitary Risks of For example canned beans with meat containing the Secretariat of meat require USDA certificate Health (SSA). Processed products: Certificate of Health or Sanitation and/or Certificate of Free Sale. Note: For some products a quality control certificate issued by the manufacturer is accepted *Harmon ized Tariff Schedule defines the required documentation Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards-Certification Page 2 Section II. Purpose of Specific Export Certificate(s) NAFTA Certificate of Origin This is a trilaterally agreed upon form used by Canada, the United States and Mexico to certify that goods qualify for the preferential tariff treatment accorded by NAFTA. The Certificate of Origin must be completed by the exporter. This document certifies that the listed products originated in the territory of the exporting company and comply with the origin requirements specified for those goods in the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). A sample is available on the U.S. government export portal: http://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/aes/exporttraining/videos/nafta_cert_of_origin.pdf FSIS Meat and Poultry Export Certificate of Wholesomeness The Meat and Poultry Export Certificate is issued by the Field Operation Staff of the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), USDA. This document certifies that the meat products included in the shipment are from animals that received both ante mortem and postmortem inspection and were found sound and healthy. In the case of poultry and poultry products, this document certifies that the birds were officially inspected and are wholesome and fit for human consumption. This document is issued to the exporter and also includes the general data of the consignee. Other data included in the form are district office, country of destination, folio number, plant number and city, type of facility, total marked net weight, total containers, and products as labeled with their individual market weight, number of packages and plant number. The slaughter date, packing date and lot number are included in the remarks section of the certificate. The name of the species on the product description line is also required (for example, hot dogs, beef, pork, or turkey). There are various sanitary statements required in the remarks section, as well. These are listed in the Mexican Import Requirement Sheet or Hoja de Requisitos for any given product. Note: The reader should be aware that FSIS has recently modified Letterhead Certificates for certain products in order to comply with SENASICA’s Import and Export General Directorate for new dispositions. These Letterhead Certificates have been posted on USDA’s FSIS Export Library and the Spanish requirements are posted on SENASICA’s website under the Modulo de Consulta de Requisitos Zoosanitarios para la Importacion (MCRZI). For additional information refer to GAIN Report MX1092 published on 12/6/2011 by the Office of Agricultural Affairs in Mexico City. For more information on FSIS export certificates visit the following link: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Regulations_&_Policies/Index_of_Import_Requirements_by_Country/index.asp APHIS Health Certificate for Animal Products International health certificates for the export of animal products are issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). These certificates are completed by an accredited veterinarian. Complete and signed international health certificates for the export of animal products from the United States must be endorsed by a USDA/APHIS Veterinary Services area office in order to be valid. For more information on Mexican regulations for animal products visit: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/animals/animal_import/animal_imports_states.shtml Certificate for Poultry or Hatching Eggs for Export For the importation of hatching eggs, Mexico requires a health certificate attesting to the health and origin, including sampling and testing procedures specified in the voluntary National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP). This certificate is issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). For details visit: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/regulations/vs/iregs/animals/animal_faq.shtml International Health Certificate for Live Animals Mexican import regulations for live animals stipulate that a health certificate must be presented to Mexican Secretariat of Agriculture (SAGARPA) officials at port of entry. The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) issues Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards-Certification Page 3 international health certificates for the export of animals from the United States. These are completed by an accredited veterinarian who certifies herd and animal health status, conducts tests, and records test results for the individual animals being exported. Complete and signed international health certificates for the export of animals from the United States must be endorsed by a Veterinary Services area office in order to be valid. For more information on U.S.-Mexico live animal protocols and Mexico’s import regulations, please see the following links: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/regulations/vs/iregs/animals/animal_faq.shtml http://www.aphis.usda.gov/regulations/vs/iregs/animals/animal_mexico.shtml http://www.senasica.sagarpa.gob.mx Export Health Certificate and Certificate of Origin (NOAA) Mexico’s import regulations for seafood products require that exporters present an export certificate attesting to health and origin of the product. This certificate is issued by the U.S. Department of Commerce/NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). NOAA’s Seafood Inspection Program offers export certification to facilitate trade of seafood products that meet the requirements of the importing country. NOAA certifies that the products presented for inspection are from the United States, comply with U.S. regulations, and are wholesome. At present SAGARPA regulates the import of crustaceans such as lobsters, crabs, crayfish and shrimps. Other seafood products, including processed products, have to comply with import regulations established by COFEPRIS. Importers should consult the Harmonized Tariff Schedule to verify specific regulations. For additional information on the NOAA Seafood Inspection Program and NOAA certificates visit the following links: http://www.seafood.nmfs.noaa.gov/Export_Certification.html http://www.seafood.nmfs.noaa.gov/EU_Certificates.html For detailed requirements and COFEPRIS import regulations see: http://www.cofepris.gob.mx Phytosanitary Certificate-Plant Protection and Quarantine-PPQ Mexico requires a phytosanitary certificate attesting to the health of plants and unprocessed plant products. This certificate is available through the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). The phytosanitary certificate is issued by the Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) office to the exporter. This document certifies that plants or plant products have been inspected and/or tested according to appropriate procedures, are considered to be free from quarantine pests, and conform to the current phytosanitary requirements of the importing country. For more information, visit the following links: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/plants/plant_exports/export_certificates_forms.shtml http://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/plants/manuals/index.shtml http://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/plants/plant_exports/faqs.shtml Certificate of Free Sale / Certificate of Health or Sanitation for Processed Products Mexico’s Federal Commission for the Protection against Sanitary Risk (COFEPRIS) import regulations stipulate that the importer (or Mexican custom broker) must present a certificate of health or sanitation in order to obtain an import permit or a previous import notification from COFEPRIS. This document is issued by several state and federal government agencies and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) certified laboratories. It assures the authorities of the importing country that the products comply with U.S. requirements and are sold freely in the market of the country of origin. Health certificates must be issued by a U.S. Federal or State government health office. To learn more about product specifications and corresponding Mexican import regulations, exporters should consult the specific Harmonized Tariff System. For more information regarding COFEPRIS import regulations and import permits visit: http://www.cofepris.gob.mx Section III. Specific Attestations Required on Export Certificate(s) Specific attestations required for the export of meat, poultry and egg products to Mexico from the United States can be Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards-Certification Page 4 found at the following USDA/FSIS website: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Regulations_&_Policies/Mexico_Requirements/index.asp Information regarding the export of hatching eggs can be found at: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/regulations/vs/iregs/animals/animal_faq.shtml Additional information on how to obtain APHIS export certificates for plants and plant products can be obtained in the APHIS Export Program Manual at: http://www.aphis.usda.gov/import_export/plants/manuals/domestic/xpm.shtml Note: The reader should take into consideration that FSIS and APHIS are transitioning to electronic export certification and thus formats and identification marks may vary from what is currently in use. Section IV. Government Certificate’s Legal Entry Requirements Meat and Poultry Export Certificate of Wholesomeness The document is not valid unless signed by an inspector of the USDA/FSIS Meat and Poultry Inspection Program, listing the name and the date. An original of the document is required and can be valid for multiple lots if the shipments enter at the same time at the port of entry. Phytosanitary Certificate-Plant Protection and Quarantine-PPQ An original of this document is required by Mexican Customs and can be valid for multiple lots if the shipments enter at the same time at the port of entry. APHIS Health Certificate for Animal Products In order to be valid, this document must be signed by a USDA/APHIS Veterinary Services official. An original of the document has to accompany each shipment presented for inspection. Certificate for Poultry or Hatching Eggs for Export The original certificate must be presented upon arrival to the inspection point at port of entry. International Health Certificate for Live Animals An original of this document is required and must be completed and signed by a USDA/APHIS Veterinary DVM. This certificate is valid for multiple lots if the shipments arrive at the same time for inspection at the corresponding livestock export pen on the U.S. side of the border. Certificate of Free Sale On July 25, 2007, Mexico’s Secretariat of Agriculture posted revised requirements in the Federal Animal Health Law for certificates of free sale for certain animal feeds, including pet food. Currently, exporters are required to present an original certificate of free sale upon entry of the product. For some products, SAGARPA will accept an original affidavit letter from the manufacturer indicating that the product is freely sold in the United States. For other products, Mexico requires a certificate issued by state health offices. Supplier or manufacturer export declarations are not accepted as proof of compliance. Section V. Other Certification/Accreditation Requirements For more information on food standards and regulations, please consult the Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards Report for Mexico MX9325 (see below). Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards-Certification Page 5 Author Defined: For More Information FAS/Mexico Web Site: We are available at www.mexico-usda.com or visit the FAS headquarters' home page at www.fas.usda.gov for a complete selection of FAS worldwide agricultural reporting. Other Relevant Reports Submitted by FAS/Mexico: Report Subject Date Number Submitted MX1509 Update- Principal Border Entry Points for U.S. Agricultural 3/19/11 Exports MX 1511 UPDATE - Simplified Labeling Procedures in Mexico's 3/31/11 Border Areas MX1512 Exporting to Mexico-Managing Border Entry Issues 4/15/11 MX0344 FAIRS Country Report 12/21/11 Useful Mexican Web Sites: Mexico's equivalent to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (SAGARPA) can be found at www.sagarpa.gob.mx, equivalent to the U.S. Department of Commerce (SE) can be found at www.economia.gob.mx and equivalent to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (SALUD) can be found at www.salud.gob.mx. The Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) which regulates imports of forestry products including seeds and wood products can be found at: www.semarnat.gob.mx. Mexico’s Agency for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA), which also inspects imported wood products, can be found at www.profepa.gob.mx. Mexico’s Customs Agency (ADUANAS, can be found at: www.aduanas.gob.mx. These web sites are mentioned for the readers' convenience but USDA does NOT in any way endorse, guarantee the accuracy of, or necessarily concur with, the information contained on the mentioned sites. Food and Agricultural Import Regulations and Standards-Certification Page 6
Posted: 30 January 2012

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