All processed products are required by law to be labeled in English. Most U.S. labels automatically satisfy Belize’s labeling requirements, but importers are still advised to consult with an importer before shipping their products.
The label must include:
- The name of the food
- List of ingredients (in descending order)
- Net contents and weight/volume
- Name and address of the manufacturer
- Country of origin
- Lot identification
- Date marketing
- storage instructions
Import licenses issued by the Ministry of Trade and Industry are required for alcoholic products. You can contact the Ministry by phone at: (501) 822-2249.
The documents that may be needed for Customs clearance include:
- Bill of Lading
- Commercial Invoice
- Phyto-sanitary Certificate or Sanitary Certificate (depending on product)
- Certificate of Origin
- BAHA Import Permit (may be requested)
- Customs Declaration Form C-100 (SAD- Single Administrative Document)
- Other certificates might be needed depending on the product.
An application at the BAHA (Belize Agricultural Health Authority) office must be filled out one week before the actual importation is to occur. In this application, the importer must specify the product and quantities he is planning to import. If any of the products are on the list that requires approval by the Ministry of Trade, the officer in charge of the application will meet with the appropriate officer at the Ministry of Trade and establish what amount will be allowed to be imported. The documents needed for this stage might include either a sanitary certificate or phyto-sanitary certificate, and the certificate of origin (these can be faxed copies). This part of the procedure can take up to a week, but is usually completed in three days. Once the import permit has been issued, the importer must send it to his supplier. The permit will establish what document must accompany the shipment (only original copies will be accepted). Please note that the import permit must accompany the shipment into Belize.
Once the shipment has arrived the importer must fill out a Customs Declaration Form C-100 (also known as the Single Administrative Document). After submitting the form, the form will be checked by an officer and verified. If all is in order, the documentation is sent to the Customs Cashier, where the importer will pay all the duties, and receive the documentation with the appropriate signatures. This part can take as little as one day and no more than a week; usually taking 2 days. The importer then takes all these documents to the port of entry and hands them over to the officer in charge. At this point, a customs officer will verify that all the amounts on the shipment are consistent with the documents. The paperwork now goes to a BAHA inspector who will also verify that all the sanitary and/or phyto-sanitary conditions have been met. If all is in order, the products will be allowed to exit the port.
Almost all agricultural products entering Belize have a duty of 40%. In addition to the duties that must be paid on imports, some products also have a Revenue Replacement Duty. This is an additional duty placed on particular products. Below is a list of the alcoholic products and their corresponding Revenue Replacement Duties (as of 12/2005):
- Beer made from malt- BLZ $20.92 per gallon
- Whiskey- BLZ $35.00 per gallon
- Brandy- BLZ $35.00 per gallon
- Vodka, Cordials & Liquors- BLZ $35.00 per gallon
- Gin- BLZ $35.00 per gallon
- Cigarettes- BLZ $58.00 per gallon
For the most current tariffs and taxes applied to imported products for this country, please visit export.gov. Please ensure you have a 10-digit HS classification code in order to obtain tariff information. Also see the Census Bureau’s Schedule B search function ( https://www.census.gov/foreign-trade/schedules/b/index.html), which allows you to classify your product according to United States export codes. Simply click "Search" and enter the keyword (i.e. beer) that best describes your product.
Office of Agricultural Affairs
(The FAS Office in Guatemala represents the interests of Belize as well as those of various other countries in the region)
Ministry of Industry & Commerce
Belize Trade & Investment Development Service
Belize Agricultural Health Authority
Embassy of Belize
The information in this guide was obtained from external sources, including the websites of various governmental agencies and organizations, direct contact with those agencies and organizations, and from Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) Attaché reports. Consequently, the accuracy of this information depends upon the accuracy of the sources.
TTB is not responsible for the content of external websites.