ARCHIVE: Importing olive oil

You will require an import licence for more than 100kgs of olives or oil cakes, falling under CN codes 0709 9039, 0711 2090 and 2306 9019.

You can find more information at the Rural Payments Agency website, in their notice to traders 32/08: Notice to traders 32/08

The requirement for import licences for some olive oils was removed for those classified under the following CN codes on 1 July 2008:

  • 1509
  • 1510 00
  • 1522 0031
  • 1522 0039

However, you may require an import licence, if you are importing oils wholly obtained in Tunisia and transported directly in the Community. This special quota scheme applies to CN codes 1509 1010 and 1509 1090.

You can find more information at the Rural Payments Agency website and Leaflet ET4 in regards with the importation of oils & fats. Explanatory Leaflet ET4

The contact details for the Rural Payments Agency are:

Stephen O’Neil
Rural Payments Agency
Lancaster House
Hampshire Court
Newcastle upon Tyne
Tel: 0191 226 5207
Fax: 0191 226 5212
Email: stephen.o’

Regardless of whether the oil originates from within or outside the EU, you will need to contact your local Customs office so that they can inform you of the Customs requirements.

If you wish to package extra virgin or virgin olive oil in the UK, your establishment will need to be approved under our domestic legislation. See information on Bottling.


There is generally no duty payable on products traded within the EU. Products imported from third countries are subject to a basic duty, unless eligible for duty free concessions under various third country agreements.

General advice and definitive guidance on the rate of duty applicable is available from the HM Customs and Revenue Advice Centre: 0845 0109000

If you do not know the customs code of the product you should first ring the codes advice line: 01702 366077

Duty rates and codes are also available from the European Commission.

The basic codes which cover olive oils are:

1509 0000

Olive oil and its fractions, whether or not refined, but not chemically modified

1509 10


1509 10 10

Virgin Lampante olive oil

1509 10 90

Other (Virgin and Extra Virgin)

1509 90 00

Other (non- virgin)


If the intention is to market the products after import, you will need to consider the specific marketing standards for Olive Oil. See information on marketing standards.

Further information

If you have any questions on food safety/hygiene or labelling more generally contact:

Food Standards Agency Helpline
Tel: 020 7276 8829, Monday - Friday 9am  - 5pm
Alternatively, contact your local EHD or Trading Standards

It should be noted that general food law enforcement in the UK is the responsibility of local authorities (either through Trading Standards or Environmental Health Departments). However, the responsibility for complying with the law lies with the individual. Ultimate decisions on interpretation of the law can only be made by the Courts.

Defra has no control over what is published on outside websites.

Page last modified: 28 September 2009
Page published: 14 March 2005