SFPA has announced a new schedule of fees being introduced for EU official seafood safety controls
The Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority has announced a new schedule of fees they say is being introduced for EU official seafood safety controls.
Under EU Official Controls Regulation, the Sea-Fisheries Protection Authority (SFPA) is obliged to charge fees for official controls and activities, including routine seafood inspections that it carries out for Food Business Operators at approved establishments and approved vessels to verify compliance with EU food regulations. These fees will be applied from 01 October 2021. The application of the charges brings the sea-fisheries and seafood industry in line with other sectors under the remit of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, where businesses are already charged for regulatory controls for live animals and products of animal origin .
The fees that will be collected by the SFPA will be calculated based on the volumes of fish first placed on the market by an operator, that is, when the oval identification mark has been placed on the product for the first time². There will be a flat rate of €1 per tonne for the first 50 tonnes in a month and 50 cent per tonne thereafter. Fees will also be charged for unplanned official controls arising from follow-up of non-compliances based on an hourly rate.
Fees relating to imports of fish and fishery products from Third Countries to Ireland at Border Control Posts will continue to be collected by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine National Disease Control Centre (NDCC).
Full details of the new fees including a Frequently Asked Questions document are available at www.sfpa.ie.
² An establishment that handles or processes fish products is required to be ‘approved’ under EU regulations. Approval involves verification of the presence of necessary structures and systems to produce safe food. Approval provides each plant with a specific number which is incorporated into the oval identification mark that consumers may see on the label of seafood.