Plants, plant products and timber

Exports of live plants and plant products such as potato and timber must comply with the phytosanitary requirements of the recipient countries. The purpose of the requirements is to prevent the spread of plant diseases and pests. Each country has a list of plant pests that must not be present in the products to be exported (quarantine pests). Countries have also imposed import bans on products, making it impossible to export the product at all.

Compliance with the phytosanitary requirements is declared by a Phytosanitary Certificate issued by the authority of the exporting country. This is issued on the basis of an inspection for a consignment that meets the requirements of the recipient country. In Finland, Phytosanitary Certificates are issued by the Finnish Food Authority. The Phytosanitary Certificate is always consignment-specific and subject to a charge.

Please note Brexit! From 1 January 2021, the rules for non-EU countries applies also for Great Britain (in Finnish).

How to ensure smooth export

  1. Find out the requirements of the recipient country well ahead of export.
    1. For example, one requirement could be that the production site has been inspected already during the previous growing season.

  2. Submit to the Finnish Food Authority (kasvienvienti@ruokavirasto.fi)
    1. List of quarantine pests, for grain also quarantine pests and weeds, of the recipient country
    2. Information on other phytosanitary requirements of the recipient country (additional declarations required for the certificate)

  3. Make an export declaration in the Phytosanitary Certificate service or on a form no later than two weeks before export.
    1. Click here to go to the service (in Finnish)
      or
    2. Send the application form to kasvienvienti@ruokavirasto.fi
    3. Please note: The address of the consignor in the PC has to be a Finnish one. For example when exporting timber, the address of the local agent or sawmill etc. can be used. It might be easiest if the local agent applies for the certificate as also the invoice address has to be in Finland.

Find out the following information to complete the export declaration:

  1. Consignor name
  2. Recipient (full name and address
  3. Recipient country
  4. Country of origin
  5. Manufacturer's name and address
  6. Dispatch method (ship, aircraft, road vehicle, etc.)
  7. Entry point
  8. Planned time and place of dispatch
  9. Product information (scientific name of the plant species, plant variety)
  10. Exact quantity of goods (weight, number of items, number of boxes, etc.)
  11. Billing address
  12. Forwarding agent with contact information if any

A phytosanitary certificate is usually required for the following products

Register with the Finnish Food Authority's plant health register

Companies that regularly export products requiring a phytosanitary certificate to non-EU countries register with the Finnish Food Authority's plant protection register.

Other certificates may also be required for an export consignment

An export inspection is carried out before issuing a Phytosanitary Certificate

The inspection may be carried out at the place of production as a yearly export inspection or as a batch inspection just before export. Export inspections are also subject to a charge.

The inspection determines whether the product to be exported meets the requirements of the recipient country. If necessary, a sample shall be taken from the lot to be examined for plant pests or weeds. An export consignment meeting the requirements is issued with a phytosanitary certificate. If the product fails to meet the requirements, the certificate cannot be issued.

The inspection does not normally need to be ordered separately, but is carried out on the basis of the export declaration, if necessary. However, in order to carry out the inspection in good time ahead of export, please notify by email (kasvienvienti@ruokavirasto.fi) of the following products before making the export declaration: nursery plants, grain, agricultural or forestry machinery, coffee and other products if their country of origin is other than Finland.

Export of plant material and potatoes to Russia

The export of potatoes and plant material from EU countries to Russia has been banned since 1 July 2013. Russia has given the reason for the ban as plant pests detected in inspections. However, the ban does not apply to pot plants grown in greenhouses. If the plants to be exported come from another EU Member State, they must be accompanied by a pre-export certificate stating the origin of the consignment to be exported. Similarly, when pot plants are taken to another EU country and for re-export from there to Russia, the Plant Health Unit of the Finnish Food Authority must be contacted to get the document.

Contact information

Page last updated 8/30/2021