1. What is certification?

Certification is a set of procedures that guarantee that a product or process is in conformity with the specified standard. The purpose of certification is to demonstrate that the specified requirements are met.

  1. What is a certification body?

A certification body is a third-party conformity assessment body operating certification scheme(s)

  1. What is a certification programme?

Certification programme is the system of rules, procedures and management for carrying out certification of a product or process, including the standard against which it is being certified.

  1. What is accreditation?

Accreditation is a third-party attestation related to a conformity assessment body conveying formal demonstration of its competence to carry out specific conformity assessment tasks.

  1. What are the various certification services provided by BAFRA?

BAFRA has the following three certification schemes in operation under product certification:

  • BAFRA product certification scheme covering food products
  • BAFRA product certification scheme covering organic products
  • BAFRA product certification scheme covering GAP products
  1. What are the essential requirements to be possessed by a manufacturer or producer for applying to BAFRA for obtaining certification?

For obtaining certification, the manufacturer or producer must have requisite manufacturing infrastructure, appropriate process controls, quality control and testing capabilities for the product or process as per relevant Standard.

  1. How does BAFRA grant the certification?

BAFRA grants certification based on successful assessment of the manufacturing infrastructure, process controls, quality control and testing capabilities of the manufacturer through a visit to its manufacturing premises. Conformity of the product or process to the relevant standard(s) is also established through independent laboratory testing or testing in the manufacturing premises or a combination of both. The process flow for BAFRA’s product certification system can be found at http://www.bafra.gov.bt/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/BAFRA-17065-PROCESS-FLOW-for-certification.pdf

  1. Where do I submit my application for product certification?

BAFRA accepts applications for product certification in both hard copies and electronic formats. The application can be submitted to the nearest BAFRA office or it can be emailed to BAFRA-CS at bafraacd@gmail.com

  1. Can I submit one application for the same product being manufactured at different factory locations?

No, a separate application for each factory location is required to be submitted, even if the product and the relevant Standard is the same.

  1. What is the fee applicable for certification?

Currently, the certification service provided by BAFRA is on gratis.

  1. What is the timeline for grant of BAFRA’s product certification licence?

Average time taken for grant of product certification licence is generally three months from the date of acceptance of a fully complete application. However, the turnaround time may vary depending upon the client’s fulfilling the standard and certification requirements during the certification process.

  1. What is the validity of BAFRA’s product certification licence?

The product certification license is valid for a period of three years. Surveillance audit of the licensee is carried out by BAFRA at least once in a year.

  1. How should one apply for the renewal of a licence?

For renewal of validity of license, BAFRA issues a renewal notice to the licensee, three months before the date of expiry of the license. The licensee shall submit the renewal application to BAFRA in the prescribed form, at least one month prior to the expiry of license.

  1. What are the duties and responsibilities of the owner of a manufacturing unit holding BAFRA’s certification license regarding factory/farm surveillance?

 The certification licence holder is required to extend co-operation to the certification officers of BAFRA or personnel of the agents appointed by BAFRA to carry out surveillance inspection. The licence holder shall also share relevant records and information sought. He would also facilitate testing in the factory and drawl of samples for independent testing. The licence holder shall be required to deposit samples to the designated laboratory as per advice of BAFRA certification officers.

  1. I have already got a certification licence from BAFRA for the product as per the relevant Standard in my factory. Can I use this licence on all varieties of the product being manufactured in the factory?

No, one licence is granted by BAFRA for one product or one Standard (however, the licence may cover more than one variety/grade/size etc. specified/covered in the standard). The products and its varieties on which Standard Mark can be used is mentioned in the “Scope of licence” granted to you. It cannot be used for other product varieties not covered in the scope. However, you can get the scope of licence changed (inclusion or deletion of varieties) with reference to the standard against which licence has been granted.  

  1. What is the procedure for intimation regarding change of address or shifting of the manufacturing unit?

BAFRA’s certification licence holder is required to inform BAFRA of its intentions of shifting the manufacturing unit to a new address with relevant documents for the new premises similar to the documents submitted at the time of application to BAFRA for grant of licence. The licensee on its own shall suspend the use of the Standard Mark under intimation to BAFRA on relocation of the manufacturing unit to new premises. The revocation of suspension may be done by BAFRA after verification of the old premises and verification of production process at new premises. 

  1. I have purchased a food product bearing BAFRA’s Certification Mark but I have doubt regarding its authenticity. How can I check whether the product is genuine?

 To check whether the Certification Mark is genuine or not, you may check the standard number and the license number marked on the product or the package. Verification of the licence number marked on the product can be checked from the publicly available Register of Licenses granted under BAFRA-CS  ( Registry  of Licenses granted ).  If the marking is not genuine, you may complain about it to BAFRA through the toll free number 1555 or write to the Director General, BAFRA, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, Thimphu or visit the nearest BAFRA office.

  1. What are the provisions of complaint and appeal against the decisions of BAFRA in regard to certification?

The client has a right to complain to BAFRA about aspects of the certification service provided. The client may also appeal to BAFRA against its decisions on issuing, maintaining, extending, suspending, withdrawing, or terminating certification. In all these cases, BAFRA deals with them in accordance with procedures for handling complaints and appeals, respectively.



Plant and animal quarantine Services

The primary mandates of Bhutan Agriculture and Food Regulatory Authority (BAFRA) is to implement effective biosecurity measures to protect the agriculture farming system including animal health, and public health from risks of entry, establishment and spread of exotic and or notifiable pests and diseases. Thus, a major role is placed…more

Import permit and clearance

Import of animals/plants and their products are allowed into the country with prior approval and obtaining Import Permit from BAFRA. At arrival at the point of entry, the consignment intended for import must be accompanied with a Phytosanitary Certificate for plant consignment and Zoo-sanitary Certificate for animal consignment…more

In-country movement permits

Bhutan Agriculture and Food Regulatory Authority implements measures to reduce the transmission of animal or plant, pest and diseases from one dzongkhag to another. Hence In-Country Movement Permits are issued


Export certification

BAFRA facilitates the export of plant and plant products by issuing the certificates as per the requirements of the importing country following the procedure below…more

Food Handlers’ Licensing

BAFRA issues food handlers license after a health interview, training on food safety, and signing an undertaking that the food handler and all those under their supervision avoid themselves from handling food under certain conditions of illness as listed below…more

Registration & Licensing Services

A person who intends to operate a food business requires a food safety license from BAFRA. BAFRA issues food safety licence to a food business that complies with BAFRA GHP/GMP Criteria  for Licensing of food business. To obtain a food safety licence…more

Food Testing Services

To provide food testing services to the regulators, food businesses and the general public, National Food Testing Laboratory was established, and it has following testing facilities..more

Certification Services

BAFRA provides product certification services to support the farmers, industries and commerce in Bhutan for market access and trade facilitation. BAFRA implements product certification in conformity with ISO IEC 17065:2012 to provide a third party mark of certification. Our certification services will enable you…more

Biosafety (GMO) Services

The Biosafety requirements are implemented as per the Biosafety Act of Bhutan 2015, and Biosafety Rules and Regulations 2018. The objectives of this Act is to protect, conserve and safeguard the biodiversity of Bhutan and also to promote the nation’s food and nutrition security and safeguard the animals and human health from unintended effect of Genetically Modified Organism (GMO).  Read More…




Bhutan Agriculture and Food Regulatory Authority, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, Post Box: 1071, 

Thimphu, Bhutan, Tel: +975-02-327031/325790 Fax: +975-02-327032/335540