New European regulation of organic production
Due to the constant growth of organic production in the last decade, the European Commission (EC) has developed a new Regulation (EU) 848/2018 applicable from January 2021 that extends the organic products that can be produced and exported within the European community, its respective controls and also considers the bonus these when carried out internally by the operators themselves.
The commercialization of organic products within the European Union represents 27,000 million euros, 125% more than 10 years ago. According to a report ‘The world of organic farming’ 2018 prepared by the European and global organic farming statistics (FiBL), in Europe there are 14 million hectares of organic farming and Spain tops the total hectares in organic reaching 2 million hectares, followed by Italy with 1.8 million hectares and France with 1.5 million.
In the face of such production, the Regulation has extended organic agricultural products that can be produced, prepared, labeled, distributed, marketed, imported into the Union or exported from it. These new foods are:
- Yeasts intended for human or animal consumption,
- yerba mate, sweet corn, vine leaves, palms, hops buds and other similar edible parts of plants and products obtained from them,
- sea salt and other salts for food and feed,
- silk cocoons suitable for winding,
- natural gums and resins,
- bee wax,
- essential oils,
- natural cork stoppers, not agglomerated and without binding substances,
- uncarded or combed cotton,
- wool without carding or combing,
- raw skins and untreated skins,
- and traditional plant-based vegetable preparations.
Although the EU ensures the quality and food safety of organic products marked with the organic production logo, they will increase the guarantee levels thus providing the logo with the quality that responds to the expected expectations of such foods. In this line of control, as explained in the Regulation (Articles 37 to 43), good work and internal control performed by operators will be rewarded.
For example, when their records are excellent for 3 consecutive years, official controls will be carried out every two years. On the other hand, controls on the absence of unauthorized pesticides will continue. Four years after the regulation begins to be applied, it is expected that the Commission will analyze the situation within four years from when the regulation begins to be applicable, that is, in 2025, to continue making progress on this issue.
This new regulation replaces Regulation 834/2007, therefore the products made according to this document may be marketed until the coming into force of the next regulation until supplies last.