Saudi Arabia Food Import Regulations

When we decide to travel and visit a new country, we surely must learn about its law and tradition in advance. When it comes to moving to a particular country, things need to be more serious. This way you will avoid certain issues along the way and after arriving which is a goal to achieve. When it comes to Saudi Arabia Food import regulations, this is something essential no matter if you are moving or traveling. It matters even more to those who plan on moving their business there or supporting another one. To help you understand the law better, here is everything you should know!

Saudi Arabia food import regulations

Due to its culture and law, Saudi Arabia published a couple of regulations in recent years. Some of them were not so good for other countries and their plans, while others turned out to be quite suitable. Many shipping and logistics companies will provide essential parts of these regulations to their clients which can save a lot of your time. It is worth mentioning that Saudi Arabia is not the only country with strict food import regulations. Countries all around the world will follow the law when it comes to this topic and will not change regulations no matter what.

person checking Saudi Arabia food import regulations
You will need a lot of documentation ready so make sure you have enough time for preparations

Imported food products

When it comes to importing food to Saudi Arabia, the rules are pretty simple. Every client who wishes to do so, must go through a certain procedure and present the product according to the rules. Every importer must set up an  E-Account and set up an individual username and password at SFDA’s Operations Sector E-Services. After that, it should upload a picture of the food product including all the labels and dates. You need to know that this entire process needs to be in both English and Arabic! Later when you go on to sea cargo Jeddah, their employees and agents will guide you through the rest of the process.

Herbal products regulations

Herbal products include certain medications and supplementary foods. Each one of these products must be registered with the General Directorate of Medical and Pharmaceutical Licenses of the Ministry of Health. It is highly advised that if you plan on doing it you begin the process on time. Some of these products need to go through certain controls and that may take a while. Apart from that, the importer must include:

  • Table of contents
  • Product description and labels
  • Certificates issued by the health authorities in the country of origin
  • An authenticated copy of the agency registration certificate

Keep in mind that ocean freight to Saudi Arabia is usually making this process much easier. They will help you collect all the neccessary documents and paperwork and provide more details on what your next step should be.

Saudi Arabia food import regulations regarding animal feed

When it comes to animal feed you plan on importing to Saudi Arabia, it is pretty similar to food products regulations. Saudi Arabia uses Animal Feed National Registry for registering and licensing domestic feed importers and producers. The agent or importer must once again set up an account and repeat the same process. Those who run a business related to this and plan on importing animal feed to Saudi Arabia for the first time should rely on a good agency. Things will be much easier when you leave it to people who have enough experience and know exactly what to do.

food in supermarket
Saudi Arabia food import regulations must be double-checked if you plan on importing some products

The importance of the E-Clearance system

Keep in mind that Saudi Arabia does import only through this system. Anything that goes beyond it will not be reviewed or let into the Kingdom. The system covers all food imports, including packaged products and raw materials for the food processing industry, as well as animal feed products. Many cargo shipping companies in Saudi Arabia will inform you about this right on time. Whatever your plan is, make sure to stick to the rules and only focus on following each step correctly!

The process of approving the foreign competent authority

Even though it may sound like a lot of work, the process is not so complicated after all. All you or your agent have to do is send an official request to SFDA through a diplomatic channel. If your request is ok, you will get an Annex form. This is where you may need professional help, as there is no need to fill out the form and make a mistake.

What are Saudi Arabia food import regulations if you go on vacation?

But traveling to Saudi Arabia is also pretty common and if you want to spend a lovely holiday there, you still must know how regulations work. Of course, you will not be able to get food and drinks into an airplane regulated by Saudi Arabia law. It is worth mentioning that there is a special allowance in some situations, but you will need to communicate with the airline company about it. Make sure you have documents ready and that you have enough time to provide them all.

woman checking food in warehouse
If you realize that all of this is too complicated for you, you should leave it to professionals

You should know that if traveling to Saudi Arabia, you will get a chance to try some of the most delicious meals ever. If you are a foodie and love trying new things, there is no need of bringing anything with you!

In conclusion

After all, Saudi Arabia food import regulations are pretty simple and easy to follow. Those who have huge companies only need to find a good agency that will do the forms and requests in time. If you have a smaller business and wish to move it to Saudi Arabia, professional moving companies will help you out. You just make sure to provide all the details and leave enough time for the entire process.

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