Press statement: Organic regulation review: no deal is better than a bad deal

Brussels, 13 June 2017 – Yesterday’s meeting of the Council of Agriculture Ministers did not change the opinion of the organic sector on the current draft text for a new organic regulation. As no new content has been presented, our organizations still question the real added value and the technical soundness of the proposal.

After five years of negotiating, organic operators and EU citizens deserve a regulation that is readable, consistent and easy to implement on the ground. Postponing the discussion on controversial topics might be a way to reach a political agreement – but at what cost?

Many of the items presented as improvements to the existing legislation – including group certification, protein feed, compliance in import and others – could be easily applied to the current legislation through implementing regulations.

If, by the end of June, the text is not substantially improved and doesn’t provide the expected added value, the Organic Movement, Organic Certifiers and the Fair Trade Movement ask the Member States, the European Parliament and the European Commission to work on developing the current legislation. The current legislation can be made fit to support the development of the organic sector and help organic operators in their hard work in delivering high quality food and public benefits for society.

IFOAM EU, EOCC and FTAO remain constructive and will send suggestions on how to improve the legislation, to ensure it creates the right conditions for the development of organic farming across the EU, in line with its principles.


For more information, please contact:
Magdalena Wawrzonkowska, Communications Manager
+32 (0)2 808 7991, magdalena.wawrzonkowska[@]

Aurélie Quintin, EOCC Representative

Sergi Corbalán, FTAO Executive Director
+32 (0)2 543 1923, corbalan[@]

Notes for editors:

  • The IFOAM EU (The International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements EU Group) represents actors of all the organic value chain, from the farm to the fork. All the major EU organic farmers' associations as well as processors and certifiers and – through our members – thousands of consumers and citizens are part of IFOAM EU.  With its wealth of hands-on field experience and technical knowledge, has always provided valuable input to national and EU institutions on the organic legislation and development policies, and since 1972 the – continuously updated – IFOAM technical standards have been the reference for policymakers all over the world, including for the EU regulations published from 1991 onward.
  • The EOCC (The European Organic Certifiers Council) is the voice of about 50 control bodies and authorities in Europe and beyond. EOCC has brought constructive proposals throughout the revision process of the EU organic regulation and made numerous improvement suggestions, as EOCC hoped that a “better regulation” could be achieved, serving to protect consumers, supporting fair competition on the organic marketplace and supporting further growth of the organic sector.
  • The FTAO (The Fair Trade Advocacy Office) speaks out on behalf of the fair-trade movement for fair trade and trade justice with the aim to improve the livelihoods of marginalised producers and workers in the South. The FTAO is a joint initiative of Fairtrade International and the World Fair Trade Organisation (respectively with a European and global scope). Through these three networks the FTAO represents an estimate of 2.5 million Fair Trade producers and workers from 70 countries, 24 labelling initiatives, over 500 specialised fair-trade importers, 4,000 World Shops and more than 100,000 volunteers.

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