A new important regulation on Food Import in Thailand has been issued by Thai FDA, effective from October 1st, 2023.
All the Quality Standard Certificate necessary to register food in Thai FDA (ISO 22000 or HACCP or GMP), must now be provided in original or certified true copy. Before, a simple copy in PDF was acceptable.
This new regulation is related both to new product under registration and to all the food products already registered, including dietary supplements.
Product licenses remain unaffected by this new rule, but the importer will have to submit to Thai FDA the certificate true copy for a check and approval. This must be done in hard copy, and FDA will stamp for approval the document, that will be scanned and uploaded to FDA system by the importer or the license holder.
The Thai FDA inspection office at the Custom will access the certificate in the system and will link it to the LPI in order to expedite the process.
This new procedure to import food in thailand has been described by thai FDA as a way to simplify the food import operations. Actaully it is just creating some new additional work to regualtory companies and to importers, since the work must be done in hard copy (paper). Only manuafcturers from Countries issuing electronic certificates can avoid this procedure. Actually these Countries are just Japan and South Korea.
FOOD IMPORT in THAILAND – requirements for certificates
(Source: Thai FDA)
- Ministry of Public Health Notification (No. 420) Title: Food production processes, processing equipment/tools and preservation practices. Importers of food for sale must be in possession of certification documents demonstrating that their quality standards of production practices are equivalent to or not lower than the requirements prescribed in the Annex to this notification.
- Announcement of the Food and Drug Administration on documents or certificates regarding the standard of the food production system for the import of food products, with the following essence:
2.1 The issuing body of the certificate must be one of the following bodies:
1) the competent authorities of the producing country; OR
2) other organizations recognized by the competent authorities of the producing country; OR
3) the Certification Bodies (CB) accredited by the Accreditation Bodies (AB) which are part of and recognized by the International Accreditation Forum (IAF)
2.2 The details indicated in the certificate shall include:
1) Name and address of the manufacturer
2) Production system standards/regulations such as GMP, HACCP, IFS, ISO 22000, BRC, SQF etc.
3) Type of imported food such as drinks, amberjack fillet etc.
4) Scope of certification such as production, processing, refrigeration, freezing, etc.
5) Agency that issues documents/certificates
6) Validity period of the certificate (in the event that the expiry date is not specified on the certificate, the certificate will be valid for no more than one year from the date of issue or from the date of actual certification)
2.3 The certificate must have at least one of the following characteristics:
1) Original document
2) Copy of the document authenticated by one of the following bodies
2.1 Agency that issued the certificate
2.2 The embassy or consulate of the producing country in Thailand
2.3 Government bodies in the producing country or persons certified by the State as Notaries/Chambers of Commerce/Oath Commissioner/Justice of the Peace
3) In the case of an electronic certificate or a certificate signed with an electronic signature. must be handled in accordance with the Electronic Transactions Act