Importers or end-users should submit import license certificates and related documents to the local FDA or the national quarantine organs of Korea five days before the arrival of imported food. Korean staff will examine the documents submitted by importers or end-users, including the label samples of imported food.
After arrival at the port, the local FDA of Korea will conduct sensory and laboratory tests on imported food. The first imported food must be tested in laboratory. In addition, KF-DA computer system will randomly select some imported food for laboratory testing, but excluding the commodities that have been tested in the laboratory.
Quarantined imported food will be allowed to import and issue import certificates; unqualified imported food will be notified by the local FDA to applicants and local customs, and the batch of food will be returned, destroyed or changed. If there is any objection to the results of the inspection, the importer may lodge a complaint within two weeks, and the local FDA will conduct a re-sampling and re-examination as the case may be. After imported food enters the market, local FDA food supervision agencies and local food safety agencies will also carry out random inspection in the field of circulation.
In addition, Korea defines special function food as a kind of commodity between food and medicine. If it is a general functional food, that is, if its safety has been confirmed by previous risk analysis, it can be tested according to the general food; if it is a new resource food, it needs importers to provide relevant information to KFDA, which can be imported only after risk assessment.