Senator Pippa Hackett, Minister of State for Land Use and Biodiversity with special responsibility for horticulture today announced Ireland’s connection to the ePhyto Hub (ePhyto Hub). The ePhyto Hub is a centralised system run by the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC - International Plant Protection Convention) supporting trade in plants and plant products that are certified as free from plant pests and diseases.
International trade in plants and plant products is significant and Ireland is recognised internationally as having a favourable plant health status, as many of the plant pests and diseases present elsewhere are currently absent from Ireland.
The ePhyto Hub facilitates the electronic exchange of Phytosanitary Certificates between National Plant Protection Organisations. Electronic Phytosanitary Certificates or ePhyto Certificates are digital versions of paper Phytosanitary Certificates attesting that the plant and plant products being exported do not carry plant pests and diseases that could impede trade or threaten economies and the environment.
Commenting on the announcement, Minister Hackett said ‘I am delighted to announce Ireland’s connection to the ePhyto Hub which facilitates the exchange of ePhyto certificates between Ireland and certain third countries outside of the EU who can receive ePhyto Certificates. This supports our Irish exporters and importers making trade faster, more efficient and cheaper. The use of electronic certification is a significant step forward for both industry and my Department.’
Notes for Editors:
The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine is the National Plant Protection Organisation for Ireland.
Connection to the ePhyto Hub will not change the application process for exporters applying for a Phytosanitary Certificate. Exporters applying for a Phytosanitary Certificate for a consignment should continue to use the Department’s Export Certification System.
Once the necessary controls have been completed, an ePhyto Certificate will be automatically sent from the Export Certification System to the ePhyto Hub, via TRACES, which the receiving country will be able to access.
From 31st May 2023, the Department will no longer be issuing hard copy phytosanitary certificates for exports to certain third countries. A trader notice regarding the new arrangements has issued to all Professional Operators who are registered with the Department.
For exports to countries who are not set up to receive ePhyto Certificates, there will be no change and hard copy phytosanitary certificates will continue to be issued.
Link to general information regarding Registration and Procedures for export of plants and plant products - https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/d645e-registration-and-procedures-for-export-of-plants-and-plant-products/
Trader Notice Link - https://www.gov.ie/en/collection/e366e-trader-notices/