Organic Farming: Europe Wants to Authorise Pesticides and Reduce Quality Controls in the Sector

Organic farming: Europe wants to authorize pesticides and reduce quality controls in the sector

HEALTH: The European Agricultural Council plans to soften the standards and even authorise, in certain cases, the presence of pesticides in the productions resulting from organic farming

There is growing concern among producers, processors and distributors in the organic sector in France. The European Agricultural Council, which takes place this Monday in Brussels (Belgium), is examining a project to modify the European regulation on organic farming, launched in 2014 by the European Commission.

The quality of the organic label in danger

The text, presented today to European agriculture ministers, must “define the modes of production, processing, conservation and marketing throughout Europe,” says Le Parisien.

But organic professionals believe that this new text seriously threatens the quality standards of organic farming. They launched a cry of alarm on Friday, asking the government to abandon negotiations on the new draft European organic regulation.

Pesticides soon to be authorized in organic farming?

This new draft regulation provides in particular that productions contaminated by pesticides will no longer necessarily be downgraded from the organic label, contrary to what is happening today.

“Each state can decide this threshold. Consequently, certain products containing pesticides could be sold by presenting the organic label, by virtue of the principle of the free movement of goods in Europe ”, details Le Parisien.

Quality control spacing

It also provides for more flexible quality controls on organic farms. Controls which however aim to verify the specifications required to benefit from the label.

Currently, they take place twice a year: once unexpectedly, and a second time by appointment. The new regulation provides that these checks will only take place once every 24 months. The organic sector fears “slippage”.

The industry fears a decline in confidence

“A drop in controls would damage consumer confidence,” predicts the union of organic product distributors (Synadis Bio).

Trust, however, essential in this booming sector. Driven by the growth of more than 22% in 2016, the organic market now represents more than 7 billion euros.

Organic Farming, Europe,Health, Agriculture, Bio, Brussels, Europe, Pesticides, European Commission, Agriculture bio

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