The Chinese pet accessories market has grown in recent years and keeps developing. Manufacturers of such goods aim to please their consumers, offering various animal supplies, like beds, toys, clothing, and food. Chinese intelligent products for pets are also gaining popularity due to their innovation and convenience. In this article, we cover every aspect of importing pet accessories from China to the EU. Check their production areas, duty rates, importers’ obligations, and more.
Production areas for pet accessories in China
When looking for a supplier of any goods in China, it’s always better to check the most significant manufacturing areas for the product. Depending on the specification of pet accessories, there’re a few disparate production regions; each one specializes in some categories.
The city of Shanghai offers a wide variety of pet products, such as beds, goods for cats and dogs, and care articles. Many manufacturers of accessories for animals are located in the Guangdong Province. There, Shenzhen specializes in smart products, while Dongguan and Guangzhou in dog supplies.
Companies from the Zhejiang Province have an extensive selection of beds, scratching posts, other toys, and pet clothes in their assortment. Most of their factories are in Ningbo and Hangzhou cities. Make sure to check the offers of apparel for animals in Suzhou, a city in Jiangsu Province. If you’re especially interested in articles for cats and cat lovers, Qingdao in the Shandong Province is the right direction.
Check all the given locations on the map below:
Importing pet accessories to the EU – Duty rates
Before importing any products from China, you must check their duty rates and HS codes. The information is crucial for customs clearance. It’s an obligatory process if you plan on selling your goods on the EU market. You can find the up-to-date tariff rates for every article with its HS code in the TARIC system. Duty tariffs for products imported from China are under the “ERGA OMNES.”
We’ve compiled a list of customs rates for some of the pet articles:
- Saddlery and harness for any animal (including traces, leads, knee pads, muzzles, saddle-cloths, saddlebags, dog coats, and the like), of any material (4201000090) – 2.7%
- Brushes for grooming animals (9603909100) – 3.7%
- Dog or cat food (2309109000) – in this case, the situation is more complicated because the duty rate on animal food changes depending on its composition; some of them may reach – 9.6%
- Plastic toys (9503003500) – 4.7%
- Ceramic bowls for animals (6912008190) – 5%
Requirements for importing pet accessories to the EU
One of an importer’s obligations is to get familiar with the target market’s requirements for the chosen goods. There’re no designated mandatory regulations regarding all kinds of pet accessories in the EU. When it comes to such products, they may differ depending on their specifications, like materials or intended use. Some of them might need to comply, e.g., with Directive 2001/95/EC on general product safety.
What are the other requirements that may apply to the pet products you want to import?
The REACH Regulation
The REACH Regulation conforms to the goods containing together one ton or more of chemicals per year. It’s been implemented to minimize the negative impact of chemicals in production on human health and the natural environment. It applies to various products, from clothing and textile, electronic devices, and plastic products to machines and many others. Based on the REACH Regulation, importers of such goods must register them in the REACH database and inform the ECHA (European Chemicals Agency) of their safe usage.
Requirements for importing pet food
Importers of accessories for animals are also often interested in importing pet food. However, one must keep in mind that such products must comply with many mandatory requirements regarding their safety. Such supplies are regulated by The European Pet Food Industry Federation (FEDIAF). Pet food mustn’t contain any ingredients or additives that may endanger the animals’ health or life. Therefore, it’s crucial to get acquainted with all the applicable directives and regulations.
Below we’ve listed the most significant regulations for pet food in the EU:
- Directive 2002/32/EC on undesirable substances in animal feed;
- Regulation (EU) 2017/625 on official controls and other official activities performed to ensure the application of food and feed law, rules on animal health and welfare, plant health and plant protection products;
- Regulation (EC) 178/2002 laying down the general principles and requirements of food law, establishing the European Food Safety Authority and laying down procedures in matters of food safety;
- Regulation (EC) 183/2005 laying down requirements for feed hygiene;
- Regulation (EU) 142/2011 laying down health rules as regards animal by-products and derived products not intended for human consumption;
- Regulation (EC) 1831/2003 on additives for use in animal nutrition;
- Regulation (EC) 767/2009 on the placing on the market and use of feed;
- Regulation (EC) 999/2001 laying down the rules for the prevention, control and eradication of certain transmissible spongiform encephalopathies.
For more details regarding importing pet food to the European Union, we recommend contacting The European Pet Food Industry Federation. Find the contact information here.
CE Mark and the Declaration of Conformity
Most of the articles for pets won’t need a CE mark and the documents relevant to it. This obligation concerns only electronic animal products.
Technological development has reached even the pet products industry. We notice more innovative accessories for animals appearing on the market, e.g. collars with GPS, self-cleaning litter boxes, or even air-conditioned beds. Although such products can create a sensation on some international markets, one must remember that they have to meet more safety requirements.
As mentioned before, in the case of all electronic products, you’ll need to obtain a CE mark and documents regarding it. Before import, it must be tested and verified if these goods comply with the applicable safety and quality requirements. After that, you’ll receive a document confirming the compliance – test reports, which allows the certification body to issue a CE Certificate. After obtaining test reports and the CE Certificate, the manufacturer issues the Declaration of Conformity. The complete set of these three documents permits affixing the CE mark on the products.
Pet accessories trade fairs in China
When you decide on what you’re going to import, the next step is to find a trustworthy supplier. There’re two ways to do it. You can visit one of the Chinese B2B sites, where many companies promote and sell their products, or attend a trade fair in China. Both ways have their benefits and downsides. However, visiting a trade fair in China allows you to check the quality of the goods on the spot, talk to the supplier face-to-face and get the answers to your questions immediately. It’s also a better option regarding negotiations.
Get acquainted with some of the pet products trade fairs in China:
Pet Fair Asia
Localization: Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC)
Official website: petfairasia.com/en
China (Guangzhou) International Pet Industry Fair
Localization: Poly World Trade Center
Official website: chinapetfair.com
Beijing International Pet Products Exhibition
Localization: China International Exhibition Center
Official website: cpse-expo.com
Importing pet accessories from China to the EU – Summary
- Considering the many production areas of pet accessories in China, their innovation, and relatively low duty rates, their import may benefit you.
- Remember that although there’re no specified regulations considering all such products in the EU, some of them still must comply with requirements regarding safety and quality.
- For pet accessories, check the REACH Regulation and Directive 2001/95/EC.
- Smart products must have a CE mark and the relevant documents – test reports, the CE Certificate, and the Declaration of Conformity.
- The European Pet Food Industry Federation strictly regulates pet food.
- If you’re interested in importing pet accessories from China to the EU, check one of the related trade fairs in China.
- Always verify your supplier before making the payment to ensure they’re trustworthy and the goods meet your expectations.
Also, check our article on importing pet accessories from China to the US.