Export Health Certificates


An export health certificate (EHC) is an official document that confirms food exports meet the health requirements of the destination country.

General advice on EHCs including alternative providers of EHCs is available on GOV.UK (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) website.

The Comhairle can usually only provide EHCs for fishery products and shellfish to certain countries, with all other EHCs needing to be signed by an official veterinarian.

Businesses planning to export product should check if the importing country requires an EHC.  This should include any countries the product is transiting through. If the product being exported and the country of destination/transit has a certificate available from the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) then this certificate should be used. Some countries accept non APHA certificates, however it is the responsibility of the exporter to ensure the correct certificate has been applied for.

Please contact us at the earliest opportunity if your business needs EHCs for the first time or if exporting to a new country or for a new product.  Please note that whilst the Service aims to support business it cannot always guarantee to provide EHCs, particularly at short notice and out of normal office hours. 

APHA Certificates

The Animal and Plant Health (APHA) is an executive agency of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).   Businesses looking for an APHA certificate must ensure that they:

European Union (EU)

Exports of seafood products to the EU require an APHA EHC.  The two main certificates previously issued  (certificates 8270 and 8249) cannot be used from the 15th January 2022.  They have been replaced as below

  1. 8361 replaces 8270 – this is to be used for live fish, live crustaceans and products of animal origin from those animals intended for human consumption
  2. 8364 replaces 8249 – this is to be used for live bivalve molluscs, echinoderms, tunicates and marine gastropods and products of animal origin from those animals intended for human consumption

The most significant change concerns who is permitted to certify the EHC.

APHA’s interpretation of the EU rules is that only Official Veterinarians (OVs) can certify a certificate where:

If you are requiring a certificate for the first time then please check with us prior to requesting a certificate online to enusre  we can sign the certificate.

Certifying Hubs

EU EHC’s can also be issued for products at logistics hubs or other premises where goods arrive through a supply chain.  These include the three Scottish hubs which can be used for certifying fishery products: DFDS, JDot and Mesguen.

Businesses using hubs should be familiar with the DEFRA guidance on the Export Health Certification for Products of Animal Origin Away from the Premises of Origin (») (Opens in a new window or downloads a file) and contact the Comhairle as they will need to ensure that they have the correct attestations, as detailed in the guidance, in place.

Pre Notification

Businesses requiring EHCs must provide adequate notice to ensure staff availability (ideally a minimum of 24 hours increasing to 48 hours for weekend requests).  Businesses should provide the following information:

  • Number and type of certificates
  • Number and type of commodities
  • Expected time and date full consignment information will be provided (including to APHA website)
  • Latest time certificate can be issued, including if posted* out.

*The Comhairle cannot guarantee the arrival date/time of certificates that are posted.

Please use eh@cne-siar.gov.uk or call 01851 822694 and leave a voice message.  Do not solely rely on contacting individual officers as your request may not always be picked up.  An officer will confirm receipt of your notification and agree to prepare the Certificates to be issued at the requested time.

Full EHC Request

Applications for EHCs must be submitted on EHC Online (for APHA certificates) at least three hours before the time the EHC is required and in line with the time given in the pre-notification.  All the required certificate fields on EHC Online must be completed as officers will only populate fields that cannot be completed online.  This should be emailed to eh@cne-siar.gov.uk at the same time as completing the online system and include the following information (where applicable):

  • The Certificate number of the EHC.
  • The Vehicle registration number.
  • The container/trailer number.
  • A contact name and contact telephone number of the driver.
  • Location of lorry/product being certified (if inspection required)
  • Fishing logbook information.

Non APHA certificate requests should also be emailed to eh@cne-siar.gov.uk.

Product Name

Please ensure you use the correct scientific name for any product you are exporting.  A list of the most common shellfish species are listed below.

Common Shellfish Species

Common Name

Scientific name

Common (Blue) Mussel

Mytilus edulis

Common cockle

Cerastoderma edule

Common razor shell

Ensis ensis

Pullet Carpet Clam

Venerupis senegalensis

Surf Clam

Spisula solida

King Scallop

Pecten maximus

Queen Scallop

Aequipecten opercularis

Pacific oyster

Crassostrea gigas

Native Oyster

Ostrea edulis

Common Winkle

Littorina littorea


Buccinum undatum

European Lobster

Homarus gammarus

Brown Crab

Cancer pagurus

Velvet Crab

Necora puber

Common Shore Crab (Green crab)

Carcinus maenas


Nephrops norvegicus

Squat lobster

Munida rugosa


Current fees are available on our Fees and Charges page.   APHA EHCs are consider complex certificates for fee purposes.

Contact Us

Please contact us for further information.  Contact details can be found at Consumer & Environmental Services