Exports of Fishery Products to Russia and the Customs Union

Exporters of fish and fish products must be included in a list of approved exporters periodically submitted by the Sea Fisheries Protection Agency (SFPA).

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the SFPA and the Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance of the Russian Federation (Rosselkhoznadzor) was signed on 14 January 2009. At the time, this document was the basis on which fish and fishery products were exported from Ireland to the Russian Federation. In accordance with this MOU, a list of establishments permitted to export to the Russian Federation is periodically submitted to Russia by the SFPA. The latest version of this list of exporters is available on the Russian Competent Authority website.

Certain conditions of the MOU

As a condition of this MOU, any establishment on the list must be aware of the Russian veterinary and sanitary requirements as regards the conditions of product storage, production, sale and delivery of fish and fishery products, in particular as referenced in the following relevant Russian veterinary and sanitary legislation:

Sanitary Rules and Norms SanPiN "Food raw material and foodstuff - Hygienic requirements in respect of the safety and nutritional value of foodstuffs" Appendix 1, section 1.3. Fish, non-fish trade objects and products made of them.

Sanitary Rules and Norms SanPiN "Production and sale of fish products". Enterprises of food and processing industry (technological processes and raw materials). Sanitary Regulations for practice and distribution of fishery products.

This legislation is available on the European Commission website at the following link, in the section entitled Sanitary and Epidemiologic Rules and Eegulations (SanPiN):

As a condition of the MOU, establishments on this list may also be subject to inspection periodically as set out in the document.

Formation of the Customs Union

As a result of the formation of a Customs Union between Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russi,a various new requirements have come into place for exporters of fishery products from Ireland to these countries and in particular to Russia.

Therefore, in addition to the conditions of the MOU to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of Russian and Customs Union legislation, and in particular Customs Union Regulation 299, exporters to the Russian Federation should carry out the appropriate checks as prescribed in this legislation. Depending on the product types being processed, one of the following two guidance documents should help determine these requirements.


Application process for exporters to Russia

For any other approved establishments interested in applying for inclusion on this list, an application form is available at the link below. Please fill out all relevant sections of this application form, in particular customer details in Russia. When completed please return to the following address:

Park Road
Co. Cork

Further information is available by contacting the Trade and Audit Unit at

Changes to labelling requirements for consumer packages of fishery products exported to Russia

The Russian Competent Authority for Food Safety (Rosselkhoznadzor) has notified the various European food authorities, including the SFPA, of a change to the requirements for the labelling applied to consumer packages of fishery products exported to the Russian Federation. Labels on consumer packages of the following groups of food are required to display the following information:

Frozen fish products:

  1. For glazed fish products: the net weight shall be indicated excluding the weight of the glaze
  2. For products produced from frozen fish: the label should include information about re-freezing, ie notification of secondary refreezing
  3. For frozen salted and pickled fish: the label must contain the words “frozen fish”

In addition, the Russian Competent Authority has also advised that the following requirements will apply:

  1. When processing fish fillets with food additives the moisture content after removing the glaze shall not exceed 86% of the weight of the fish fillet
  2. The weight of glaze applied to frozen fish products must not exceed 5% of the net weight
  3. The weight of the glaze applied to frozen prawn products must not exceed 6% of the net weight
  4. The weight of the glaze applied to all other frozen aquatic products must not exceed 8% of the net weight

These new additions to Russian sanitary and labelling requirements came into effect from 1 October 2010.

The SFPA would like to emphasise that these requirements are only relevant to export consignments of fishery products packaged for direct sale to the final consumer. This information is also available in pdf format at the following location: 

For any enquiries regarding exports to Russia, please email