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Analysis of Regulation (EU) 2018/848 on Organic Food

New Rules for Farming, Processing, and Organic Controls

Hanspeter Schmidt, Manon Haccius
Keywords: Traces of Conventional Agrochemicals, Essential Oils, Salt, Mate, Traditional Plant Preparations, T-Shirts, Cosmetics

Regulation (EU) 2018/848 is in the first place a restatement of the present EU law on organic food and feed, as laid down in Regulations (EC) 834/2007, 889/2008 and 1235/2008. Secondly, it provides for a number of surprising changes: It demands a more ‘combat-ready’ coexistence of organic farmers with their conventional neighbours and it ascribes a high relevance to traces of agrochemicals from conventional farming found in organic products. For organic imports from non-EU–Countries, the principle of equivalence is replaced by the requirement of strict conformity with the EU rules. The scope of application of the new organic regulation is extended. The ‘Objectives and Principles’ are now directly applicable and binding, when techniques for processing organic products are chosen. Ion exchange and adsorption technologies are prohibited in organic processing. The new regulation provides for an automatism of pesticide trace > official investigation > organic freeze > food waste. This appears to be mitigated by the draft for a Delegated Regulation introducing new procedural steps of ‘initial assessment’ and ‘reporting limit’ for the analytical findings before or below which no action by an official body is triggered. These two elements promise to provide for more proportionality in the dealings of official bodies with traces from conventionally used pesticides in organic products.
Keywords: Traces of Conventional Agrochemicals; Essential Oils; Salt; Mate; Traditional Plant Preparations; T-Shirts; Cosmetics.

Hanspeter Schmidt is a Rechtsanwalt (Germany), Fachanwalt für Verwaltungsrecht/Accredited Expert of Administrative Law (EU), Freiburg im Breisgau; Dr. sc. agr. Manon Haccius earned her Ph.D. at the University of Kiel (Animal Breeding) and functions as head of Quality Management of a major organic food company, Darmstadt, Germany.


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