Guatemala - Country Commercial Guide
Standards for Trade
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In general, U.S. standards set the pace for Guatemalan standards.  Many products made in the U.S. already meet Guatemala’s standards. The main area of difference is found in items intended for human consumption, such as pharmaceuticals and food. In Guatemala, registration and labeling requirements for these cases require U.S. exporters to follow strict local guidelines.

The United States actively serves as a resource to assist Guatemala in developing or streamlining standards. The objectives of Chapter 7 (Technical Barriers to Trade) in the CAFTA-DR agreement are to: increase and facilitate trade through improvement to the Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) agreement and eliminate unnecessary barriers and enhance bilateral cooperation.  Read more on Technical Barriers to Trade under CAFTA-DR.

Food Products

Products labeled as “diet supplements”, “homeopathic”, “and prophylactic” or “phyto-therapeutic” must be registered as medicines. All products that apply for registration must be tested by the Health National Laboratory (LNS), which is the Ministry of Health’s only laboratory. Product samples must be provided at time of registration. 

RTCA 67.01.15:07 rules fortified wheat flour, providing specifications and approved additives for wheat flour.

Testing, Inspection and Certification

What is the general approach to product testing? Can most products enter the market freely? Which must be tested?

Guatemala requires that processed animal origin food be tested at the Ministry of Health’s official laboratory prior to marketing. This test may take 1-3 months after which a registration will be issued.  The registration allows for commercialization of the product and needs to be renewed every five years.  Processed food is randomly inspected at the point of sale, but Guatemala does not carry out inspection or certification at origin.  For fresh produce or non-processed meat, OIRSA inspects at port if fresh or refrigerated, mostly for quarantine pests or ISMF-15 stamp. No food safety inspection is carried at the port of entry.

Contact Information

Interested parties may contact Agricutural Specialist Karla Tay at or Commercial Specialist Antonio Prieto at