Another step has been made towards the adoption of a revamped framework of rules for organic farming and labelling of organic products.
On 20 November 2017, EU Council’s Special Committee on Agriculture (SCA) has endorsed the provisional agreement on organic production and labelling of organic products reached between the EU Council and the European Parliament on 28 June 2017.
The aim of the proposed regulation is mainly to:
- enhance legal clarity and allow further harmonisation and simplification of production rules;
- apply to the whole EU organic sector and to all producers, including non-EU farmers who export their products to the EU market;
- introduce a risk-based approach to controls and complement the recently adopted rules on official controls;
- extend the scope of the new regulation to cover a wider list of products;
- create a new system of group certification for small farmers to facilitate their access to organic scheme;
- maintain the ban on the use of pesticides and require food business operators to take precautionary measures to avoid accidental contamination by unauthorised substances.
The text of the new regulation will be submitted to the European Parliament and the Council for formal approval. If both institutions approve the same text without amendments, it will become final. The new regulation is expected to be adopted in the first half of 2018. It will apply from 1 January 2021 and will repeal the current Regulation 834/2007.