THE UK HAS JUST MADE THE LARGEST CHANGES IN ITS TRADING TERMS WITH ITS NEIGHBOURS IN HALF A CENTURY WHICH WILL AFFECT RETAIL IN MAJOR WAYS

On 31 December 2020 at 11pm, the UK left the EU Customs Union, Single Market and Common VAT Area as the transition period ended. The new Trade and Co-operation Agreement was provisionally applied in both the UK and EU from then. Every retailer selling imported goods from the EU or exporting products to the EU is facing huge changes in the way we do business. Within the UK, new trading rules now operate between GB and NI. 

Here we host a range of guides, advice and key documents to support retailers through this period of transition - on the new customs processes, how to import products of animal origin from the EU, the new import VAT processes, changes on product markings and labelling, exporting food to the EU, and transporting goods to NI. 

Regulations on moving products across borders and onto the market are complicated and it is important if you are selling food, electricals, chemicals or pharmaceuticals to know the detail. We have set up dedicated working groups to help your experts get the latest on these issues. If your expert would like to join one of these groups please let Aodhán Connolly know. 

We are focused on working with Government to help ease the problems of new procedures for exports, labelling and compliance on both the UK and EU markets. Our issues tracker sets out the challenges for all retailers and what we are doing to help. 


Some of the content is restricted to BRC members who have paid for its creation through their annual membership fee. 

  • If your company is a BRC member but you cannot access certain content, you can join the relevant community here.
  • If your company is NOT a BRC member, please email membership@brc.org.uk to see how you can get our advice and insight immediately.


useful links

UK Government
The UK Government has released the latest iteration of its Border Operating Model for the GB border from 1 January 2021, here. Together with some case studies

Making customs declarations on EU imports after 1 January 2021, here

Advice on accounting and paying any cross-border VAT in GB from 1 January, here

Guidance on moving goods between GB and NI from 1 January, here


European Commission
Preparedness notices from the European Commission can be viewed, here


Working in Partnership

We’re delighted to be working with Deloitte as our Annual Trade Partner 2020/21
Through this partnership we’re able to bring additional insight, knowledge and expertise to help our members prepare for Brexit with Deloitte’s market-leading Global Trade Advisory team, Global Trade Bureau and Global Brexit Insights.


Members can engage through this community