Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland

Transporting animal by-products

What you must do

Animal by-products must be collected and transported in leak-proof, closed containers or sealed new packaging.

You must keep each category of by-product separate and clearly labelled to avoid contamination. See the page in this guideline: Animal by-product categories

Who can transport animal by-products

You must ensure that anyone removing your waste is authorised to do so.

In Northern Ireland

On 8 April 2011 new regulations introduced a two-tier registration system for waste carriers. If your carrier only transports animal by-products they should now be registered as a lower tier waste carrier. If the carrier transports other types of waste, as well as animal by-products, they must be registered as an upper tier waste carrier with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA). You should ask for proof - such as a certificate or letter of registration - that an individual or business is authorised to handle or transport your waste.

NIEA: Registered waste carriers database

In Scotland

You should ask for proof that an individual or business is authorised to handle or transport your waste.

This proof may be a certificate of registration or a letter confirming registration as a professional carrier or broker.

SEPA: Who is registered?

Animal by-product transportation documents

All movements of animal by-products, except manure, must be accompanied by a commercial document. This is different from a waste transfer note or hazardous waste consignment note.

The commercial document should include:

  • a record of the origin and quantity of the material
  • a description of the material, including the animal by-product category
  • the date of transport
  • the name and address of the carrier and receiver
  • if the animal by-product is to be used for composting or pet food
  • any approval numbers showing that the animal by-product has been treated and is therefore safe to be used.

If you export animal by-products or send them to be processed into pet food, you may also need a health certificate from your local Divisional Veterinary Office in Northern Ireland or your local Animal Health office in Scotland.

All original documents should accompany the animal by-products during transit. The receiver of the animal by-products must keep the original documents. The waste producer and the waste carrier must keep copies. You must keep all records for at least two years.

DAERA: Animal by-products guidance (Northern Ireland)

Animal and Plant Health Agency: Transport documents and records (Scotland)

Loading and unloading animal by-products

Some loading and unloading should only be done inside a building. This includes loading and unloading slaughter and butchery waste, and tipping animal by-products onto the floor or into a hopper.

If loading and unloading inside is not possible, you may be able to 'dock' your vehicle with the building and transfer animal by-products under cover directly to or from the building. This is acceptable when loading intact animal carcases.

You may get permission to unload certain animal by-products in outside yards in very limited and tightly controlled circumstances.

DAERA: Transport, handling and storage of animal by-products (Northern Ireland)

Animal Health: Loading and unloading animal by-products (Scotland)

Further information

NIEA: Registered waste carriers database

SEPA: Who is registered?

DAERA: List of Approved Premises and Operators

GOV.UK: Local Animal & Plant Health Agency in Scotland

In this Guideline

What are animal by-products?

Categories of animal by-products

Disposing of animal by-products

Animal carcass disposal

Disposing of food waste and catering waste

Transporting animal by-products

Handling and storage of animal by-products

Animal by-products and food waste environmental legislation

Environmental News Blog

NetRegs on NetRegs on youTube

View our latest videos & subscribe to our channel.

NetRegs Update Newsletter

Free monthly email newsletter with environmental updates for Northern Ireland and Scotland

Sign up for free today!


NIEA - Apply online

SEPA - Application forms