Fresh seafood exports from Scotland to EU halted until 18 January

SourceThe Guardian
CountryMiddle east

Export firms point to post-Brexit delays around health certificates, IT systems and missing customs papers Workers process the day’s catch on a trawler in Eyemouth harbour in the Scottish Borders last month. Photograph: Andy Buchanan/AFP/Getty Images Deliveries of fresh Scottish seafood to the EU have been halted until 18 January, after post-Brexit problems with health checks, IT systems and customs documents caused a huge backlog. Scottish fishing has been plunged into crisis, as lorry-loads of live seafood and fresh fish – from salmon to monkfish and langoustines – destined for shops and restaurants in France, Spain and other countries have been rejected because they are taking too long to arrive. The industry’s biggest logistics provider, DFDS, pointed to delays regarding health certificates, issues with the IT system interface between the group and local authorities, and incorrect or missing customs documentation from customers. New Brexit rules require every box of seafood and fish to be offloaded from lorries and inspected by vets before it leaves Scotland. It has taken business owners five hours per lorry to obtain a health certificate, which is required to apply for other customs paperwork. If the issues are not resolved soon, some fear the trade, worth more than £1bn to Scottish businesses, more...