Importing rice

When importing rice to Sweden, you need to consider customs duties, import licences and rice categories.

Several authorities, for example the Swedish Food Authority, the Swedish Board of Agriculture and Swedish Customs are jointly responsible for the regulatory framework for foodstuffs. The website verksamt.se contains information from these authorities about considerations when importing rice and similar products.

Importing foodstuffs – verksamt.se

Customs duty

As a rule, you are required to pay customs duty when importing rice. To determine how much to pay, you need the commodity code for the rice that you intend to import, as well as its country of origin. The commodity code consists of 10 digits and this code determines your rate of customs duty, as well as any import regulations. Find the commodity code and any customs duties in Tulltaxan (Taric).

Declare VAT on your imports to the Swedish Tax Authority. The rate of VAT on foodstuffs is 12%.

Search in Tulltaxan (Taric)

Categories of rice in Tulltaxan

There are various categories of rice, each with different commodity codes in Tulltaxan. Rice belongs to chapter 10 and is divided into the following categories according to the six first digits of the commodity code:

  • Paddy or rough rice 1006 10 – rice which has retained its husk
  • Husked (brown) rice 1006 20 – rice from which only the husk has been removed. Examples of rice falling within this definition are those with the commercial descriptions 'brown rice', 'cargo rice', 'loonzain' and 'riso sabamato'
  • Semi-milled rice 1006 30 – rice from which the husk, part of the germ and the whole or part of the outer layers of the pericarp, but not the inner layers, have been removed.
  • Wholly milled rice (bleached rice) 1006 30 – rice from which the husk, both the outer and inner layers of the pericarp, as well as the entire sprout with regard to medium and long grain rice, or part of the sprout with regard to round grain rice, have been removed, but where at least 10% of the grains may retain white lengthwise threads.
  • Broken rice 1006 40 – grain fragments, the length of which does not exceed three quarters of the average length of the whole grain.

To determine the complete commodity code, you much also consider the size of the packaging and the following definitions:

  • Short grain rice – rice with grains which are of a length not exceeding 5.2 mm and of a length/width ratio of less than 2.
  • Medium grain rice – rice with grains of which are of a length exceeding 5.2 mm but not exceeding 6.0 mm and of a length/width ratio of less than 3.
  • Long grain rice:


    rice with grains which are of a length not exceeding 6.0 mm and of a length/width ratio of more than 2 but less than 3.


    rice with grains which are of a length not exceeding 6.0 mm and of a length/width ratio of more than or equal to 3.

  • Enriched rice – polished rice mixed with an insignificant amount (approximately 1%) of grains that have been coated with vitamin-containing substances.
  • Parboiled rice – rice that has been soaked in hot water or treated with steam and subsequently dried.

Blended rice

When importing a blend of rices under commodity code 1006, the blend should be classified according to the commodity code that applies to the type that constitutes more than 50% of the weight.

Please note that the customs duty for blends may not correspond with the commodity code ascribed to the goods. If the weight of the the goods is comprised by at least 90% of one type of rice, the rate of customs duty of that type apples. If there is no type in the blend that comprises at least 90% of the weight, the highest rate of customs duty applies.

Import licence

Normally, the Swedish Board of Agriculture issues import licences for consignments exceeding 1,000 kg (standard licences).

In some cases you may apply for a quota allocation. A quota allocation confers a partial or full relief of customs duty on the imports. When applying for a preferential quota you are required to
demonstrate the origin of the rice using a designated certificate of origin.

General rules about licences and guarantees – Swedish Board of Agriculture

Import, export and quota licences for rice – Swedish Board of Agriculture

Please present your licence to Swedish Customs when registering your rice consignment for customs clearance. If the Swedish Board of Agriculture has issued a digital licence, it is sufficient to enter the licence number in your import declaration.

Special provisions on basmati rice from India and Pakistan

Basmati rice from India and Pakistan may be exempt from customs duty under certain conditions. This applies to the following types:

  • Basmati 370, 386 and 217
  • Kernel Basmati, Pusa Basmati, Ranbir Basmati, Super Basmati, Taraori Basmati (HBC­19), Type­3 (Dehradun).

Certificate of authenticity

To quality for duty relief, you are required to present a "Certificate of Authenticity B Basmati rice for export to the European Community".

In India, the following authorities issue certificates of authenticity:

  • Export Inspection Council (Ministry of Commerce, Government of India);
  • Directorate of Marketing and Inspection (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development).

In Pakistan , the following authority issues certificates of authenticity:

  • Trading Corporation of Pakistan (Pvt) Ltd.

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