The Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) issues official certificates that may be required in other countries or states for the import of goods that are produced or sold in Oregon. These include Certificates of Free Sale, Certificates of Origin, and Health/Hygiene/Sanitary Certificates. The department has authority to issue these certificates for businesses that are licensed by our Food Safety program – for more information visit the Food Safety licenses page.
Beginning in December 2021, ODA is providing letters to assist exporters in meeting new registration requirements imposed by the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC). More information is provided below.
For more information on phytosanitary certificates, visit the following programs:
How do I request a Certificate?
- Fill out the Certificate for Shipment Request Form completely.
- Email the completed request, product list, and a shipping label (UPS or FedEx) to FreeSaleCertificates@oda.oregon.gov. If you do not provide a shipping label, certificates will be mailed using USPS. Note: USPS shipping can take up to two weeks.
- A current ODA-issued food safety license is required before any certificate can be issued. Make sure that the correct name and address for the location is included on the form. Certificates can only be issued for licensed facilities in good standing. Contact the ODA Food Safety program for questions about licensing.
What will my Certificate look like?
- In August of 2020, the Oregon Department of Agriculture announced a new brand identity. As part of that update, the format and look of Certificates issued by the department has changed.
- As of January 1, 2022, all Certificates issued by the department will have the new branding.
China Customs Registration Letter
- On April 12, 2021, the General Administration of Customs of China (GACC) announced new registration requirements for Overseas Producers of Imported Food (Decree 248).
- Beginning January 1, 2022, exporters intending to ship 18 types of products to China will be required to register with the GACC. The products are:
|Aquatic products||Foods for special dietary purposes|
|Bee products||Fresh and dehydrated vegetables and dried beans|
|Bird nests and bird nest products||Health foods|
|Condiments||Meat and meat products|
|Dairy products||Milled grain industry products and malt|
|Dried fruits||Nuts and seeds|
|Edible grains||Sausage casings|
|Edible oils (and fats) and oilseeds||Stuffed wheaten products|
|Eggs and egg products||Unroasted coffee beans and cocoa beans|
- China has yet to fully detail what is required to meet registration requirements. At this time, neither USDA nor FDA are issuing letters of recommendation. Please contact Jess Paulson (Jess.Paulson@oda.oregon.gov) for more information.
- To assist with the registration process, ODA can issue a letter of recommendation to companies with ODA-issued food safety licenses – to request a letter, use the Certificate for Shipment Request Form. Letters will be $10 each.
- Email the completed request form and product list to FreeSaleCertificates@oda.oregon.gov.
- Letters are only available in pdf form; a physical copy will not be mailed to you.
- A current ODA-issued food safety license is required and the facility must be in good standing. Make sure that the correct name and address for the location is included on the form. Contact the ODA Food Safety program for questions about licensing.
How are requests processed?
- Certificates are generally processed and mailed within 10-12 business days of receipt. Requests that are not complete or correct will also cause a delay in processing. If additional documents are required after the original request then additional time may be required.
- Applications are processed in the order they are received, on a first-in first out basis. At this time, the department cannot expedite the issuance of certificates.
I need an Apostille on my certificate - how do I get one?
- An apostille can only be obtained from the Oregon Secretary of State's Office.
- If you need an apostille, your form must be notarized.
- Provide your Secretary of State (SOS) paperwork with your application, and shipping labels from the ODA to SOS, and from SOS to the final destination, and we will facilitate the process for you.
Q: Can I get my certificate notarized?
A: Yes. The department will notarize certificates for shipment at no additional charge. A check-box for notarization is on the request form. Note - if you need an apostille, your certificate must be notarized by the department prior to sending to Secretary of State.
Q: Could my request for a certificate be denied?
A: Yes. Your request can be denied if payment for previous certificates has not been received or if the facility is out of compliance or does not have a valid license. If the facility has not been inspected recently, a certificate may not be issued until an inspection is conducted.
Q: If I need a Certificate of Free Sale that is exactly like one I previously submitted, can I request it without sending in another request?
A: No. A new request needs to be made to the department with all the required documentation.
Q: We are a manufacturer of beauty aid products. Can we apply for a Certificate of Free Sale through the department?
Q. We produce hemp or hemp products. Can we apply for a Certificate of Free Sale through the department?
A. No, at this time we do not issue certificates for hemp or hemp products.
Q: Can product descriptions be generic or do we need the item weight, sizes, and flavors?
A: Verify with your customer to make sure what is acceptable to them. The department cannot advise on how product should be listed. We do not make edits to product lists.
Q: Do certificates have expiration dates?
A: The certificate is valid for one year from the date it was issued.