What is COI? – Does COI suffice as organic certification for your organic Japanese Tea?
Whenever someone wants to import certain products from other countries, they must comply with the given rules and regulations. These rules and regulations are necessary to inform the importing country that each product complies with its safety standards. However, to do this, you’ll need to provide certain certificates that attest to the quality of the products you’re importing, especially the organic Japanese tea, and one such certificate is the Certificate of Inspection (COI). In this blog, we will unleash everything there is to know regarding this certificate. So, stay tuned.
What is COI?
A Certificate of Inspection or COI is a certificate that is used to present to the customs officials whenever you import products to the EU. This certificate ensures that all the products imported from the third countries comply with the food and safety laws of the European Union.
The electronic certificate of Inspection is issued by TRACES, known as the Trade Control and Expert System. COI ensures the quality of your import, and it helps in preventing fraud. To acquire the certificate of Inspection, you need to keep the following things in mind:
- Both the exporters and importers need to get registered with a control body present in the respected country.
- The COI must be initiated by the importer, exporter, or the control of the country.
- The COI must accompany all the consignments that enter the EU premises.
How to create COI with TRACES?
To bring organic Japanese tea to the EU, the first step is to make COI with TRACES. Now, it is extremely easy to create COI online, but you have to make an account on TRACES first. Signing up on TRACES is quite easy. All you have to do is visit the TRACES website and click on “Create an Account.” Fill in all the required information, and your account will be set up. Now, to get COI with TRACES, follow the mentioned below steps:
- Log into your account of TRACES.
- In the top left corner, you’ll see “Certificates” click on “CoI.”
- Click on “Create new COI.”
- Now, add a commodity. You can manually type in the commodity, or you can choose from the list appearing on your screen.
- Once you’ve entered all your commodities, press “Done.”
You will now see a Certificate of Inspection appearing on your screen. This is the certificate that you need to import organic tea into the EU. However, the above isn’t the last step. There are still some spaces that you need to fill.
- Firstly, enter the name of the issuing body. When you choose a specific name, a list will pop up that will provide the details of the issuing body. Select the one that matches most to the details of your issuing body.
- The next box will get filled automatically once you provide the name of the control body.
- The third box will get filled automatically with your number of registration.
- In the fourth box, add the name of the exporter. Once you mention the name, a list will pop up. From there, you select the exporter of your choice.
- Once all the edits are done, click on the “Advanced” search that will be present on the left side of your screen.
- Search the name of the operator to add to the list,
- Add the operator’s details and click on “save.”
- Before your CoI is issued, your operator will get validated.
- Now, add all the details that are left behind, such as the country of origin.
- Add the total weight of the consignment.
- Once you’re done filling all the boxes, “submit” your COI.
You can take a print of your certificate of Inspection in any language you want. You can also print it in more than one language at the same time.
What is the role of JONA in bringing tea into the EU?
JONA is known as the Japan Organic and Natural Foods Association (JONA), which certifies the organic products present in the country. Under the Japanese Agriculture Standards (JAS), this certification is termed organic. If a product has this certification, a person can freely use and sell the product all over Japan. JONA certification is also equivalent to USDA (US Department of Agriculture), which means that it can also cross the premises of the United States.
However, in the case of Europe, you will need an additional certificate by TRACES which is the COI, to enter products into the EU, especially organic Japanese tea. All you have to do is provide the COI number to JAS, and you will get your hands on your JONA certification for organic Japanese tea.
The COI number will appear on the top of the screen when you’ll submit your certificate of Inspection.
How can you ship your organic Japanese tea to Europe?
You can ship your organic Japanese tea via air, sea, or mail. However, the most efficient way of shipping your organic Japanese tea to Europe is through DHL and FedEx.
Let’s take France, for example. Say you want to import organic Japanese tea from Japan to France. You can either use DHL or FedEx. It all depends upon your preference and convenience.
- Importing tea via DHL
In order to import tea to France via DHL, you need to fill out all the details of the parcel online. Once you’re done providing the details, you can visit the nearest DHL Service Point or book a courier. The prices of the DHL services depend entirely on the weight of your package. You can also add the information online and get a quote to know the prices of the shipment.
Using the DHL services, your shipment will reach France within 1-2 days working days. All the packages will be delivered door-to-door and signed for on delivery. You can also track your shipment via text, online, or phone. The best part? You don’t need an account to track your parcel.
- Importing tea via FedEx
While importing tea via FedEx, everything remains the same as that of DHL. The main distinguishing feature is that you will have to set up an account before using its services. You can set up a personal account or a business account, depending upon your choice.
Another thing that makes it different from DHL is that you have to log in with your credit card. But the good news for all those importers of organic Japanese tea! FedEx is offering 40% off list rates on the shipments. However, if you don’t want to pay with your credit card, the sales team of FedEx will create a shipping account for you (please, note that this offer is only for business customers.
To calculate the shipping rates of FedEx, click here.
Once your tea arrives on the territory of France or any other European country, you will also receive an invoice to pay the customs taxes and duties along with the notice to present all the required documents at the time of the arrival of your import.
What happens when the import arrives at the destination country?
Let’s take France as the destination country and organic Japanese tea as your import. Say your imported products arrive at the borders of France via any of the shipping companies. Now, all your consignments must be accompanied by a certificate of Inspection. The customs officials of France will thoroughly check all the products along with the COI.
If your imported products comply with all the European rules and regulations, the customs officials will sign your COI and decide that your organic tea is “clearable.” Once it is cleared by the customs officials, all you have to do is pay the required taxes and duties. After paying the required amount, you will be free to use and sell your organic tea across all the European countries.
However, if your imported products don’t comply with the safety standards stated by European law, they will be seized by the customs officials, and they will not sign your COI. Your import may even be sent back, and you’ll have to do the entire process again. On the contrary, your imported products may also be seized till the next batch of shipment arrives. If the next one complies with the EU laws, it will be allowed to enter the country’s premises.
When it comes to tea, a large number of people want to taste different kinds of flavors. Now, what could be a better flavor than that of organic Japanese tea? Organic Japanese tea is known for its rich and mouth-watering taste and flavor. However, to import this tea, you will have to follow certain rules and regulations, especially in European countries.
Thus, if you want to import organic Japanese tea to the European Union, make sure you have your Certificate of Inspection ready along with your JONA certification. Acquiring the COI is quite easy. You just have to follow the above-mentioned steps, and you’ll get your hands on your certificate. Also, make sure that your imported products comply with the EU laws because, otherwise, they will be seized by customs officials.
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