New European Fertiliser Regulation by 2022
After almost two years of negotiations, the European Commission, the Council and the Parliament have agreed on a new Fertiliser Regulation on 20 November 2018.
Around half of the fertilizers on the EU market are not yet covered by the existing legislation. The revised text, which will replace the 2003 Fertilisers Regulation, will include all types of fertilizers – mineral, organic, bio stimulants, growing matters, industry by-products, etc.
Besides widening the scope of the Regulation, important changes include a limit of 60 mg/kg on the cadmium content in phosphorus fertilizers, which will be set and implemented immediately after the application of the Regulation by 2022. This limit is higher than the Commission originally proposed but there is a review clause which may introduce further reductions.
The new Fertiliser Regulation offers optional harmonisation. A fertiliser has to meet the requirements of the new regulation in order to be CE marked (exported within the EU). Member States still have the possibility to set specific rules for their internal market. Furthermore, mutual recognition of products is also still possible. As there are several references to the Fertiliser Regulation 2003/2003 in the Annex I of the 889/2008 Organic Regulation, it is likely that there will be changes for the organic sector.
The draft regulation still has to be formally adapted and IFOAM EU is currently looking into it and its relevance for the organic sector.