I have an Asian tourist who wants to bring into the UK bags of pre-made bird's nest soup which is apparently very expensive in Asia and needs some advice on this.

Is this item allowed? If so, what import duty applies and what do they need to know about customs and agricultural restrictions to do this?

  • I am not sure how this is travel related? Seems more like business or economics.
    – Karlson
    Jul 8, 2016 at 18:25
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    It seems like more of a trivia question than an actual travel problem someone has because travelers rarely shop with the intent of maximizing the import duty they pay. Questions about specific items would be on-topic though. Jul 8, 2016 at 18:32
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    I have this Asian tourist who wants to bring in bags of pre-made birds nest soup which is apparently very expensive in Asia and needs some advice on this. To get the picture of the kind of item I am talking about have a look at : naturalnews.com/034342_birds_nest_soup_cave_swiftlets_food.html
    – MHOOS
    Jul 8, 2016 at 20:27
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    Ok. Great. That's a specific and answerable question. Can I edit this to be about birds nest soup instead of "items" in general? Jul 8, 2016 at 20:35
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    Thanks. I gave it a shot. Welcome to travel.stackexchange! Jul 8, 2016 at 20:41

1 Answer 1


It is not allowed:

If you are travelling from a country outside the EU, you cannot bring any meat or dairy products into the UK unless you are travelling from the Faroe Islands, Greenland or Iceland, when you are allowed a combined weight of up to 10kg per person. You may bring in a limited quantity of other animal products, such as fish, bivalves, honey and eggs.

See this handy PDF (quoted above) for more information.

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    Why is it not allowed? Bird's nest is an animal product but is clearly neither meat nor dairy nor egg nor fish; it is dried bird spit. I believe it is an exempted food product described by the last bullet here. Why should I think otherwise?
    – user38879
    Jul 9, 2016 at 15:27

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