UK Border Operating Model

The Border Operating Model has now been updated and published by the UK government outlining, in full, the implementation plan for border controls with the EU.

Download the full publication

The publication sees the introduction of certification, documentary, ID and physical checks, by commodity groups for products of animal origin, animal by-products, plant and plant products, in three phases between 1 July and 1 November 2022. This is welcomed news for traders.

A high level overview of the timetable is as follows:

  • Full customs declarations and controls will be introduced on 1 January 2022, as previously announced, although Safety and Security Declarations will now not be required until 1 July 2022.
  • From 1 January 2022, pre-notification requirements of Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) goods will be introduced.
  • From 1 July 2022, certification and physical checks will be introduced for:
    • All remaining regulated animal by-products.
    • All regulated plants and plant products
    • All meat and meat products.
    • All remaining high-risk food not of animal origin.
  • From 1 September 2022, certification and physical checks will be introduced for all dairy products.
  • From 1 November 2022, certification and physical checks will be introduced for all remaining regulated products of animal origin, including composite products and fish products.
  • From 1 July 2022, high-priority plants and plant product checks will transfer from place of destination to designated Border Control Points (BCPs) and control points.
  • Live animal physical checks will take place at designated BCPs, where a facility is operational at the point of entry. Where there is no designated BCP, checks will remain at destination for other ports of entry until sufficient BCPs are operational. Checks at Sevington inland BCP and designated airport BCPs will commence from 01 July 2022.

In the document, the UK government states that it recognised the scale and significance of the challenges businesses have been facing in dealing with the impacts of Covid-19, while also being asked to adjust to the new requirements, resulting in a new approach to give businesses more time to adjust.

The revised timetable outlined will provide businesses with further time to prepare for changes at the border and minimise disruption as the economy gradually recovers.


At BDO, we will continue to provide businesses with the support they need to trade effectively with the EU, including export helplines, webinars with customs experts and support via our network of 300 international trade advisers. If you have any queries related to the above, or require the support of our customs & international trade team, please contact myself at ([email protected]) or Marie Farrell ([email protected]).