EU organic agriculture is awaiting ministerial decision
On Tuesday June 16, in Luxembourg, the Minister for Agriculture, Jānis Dūklavs will chair the meeting of the Council for Agriculture and Fisheries.
The Latvian Presidency is planning for the meeting to reach the Council agreement on the so-called general approach to the proposal for Regulation on organic agriculture and labeling of organic products. The proposal will improve the currently effective Regulation on organic agriculture, allowing strengthening consumers’ trust in organic production. Still controversial issues are – system of official controls, import regime, and presence of residues of unauthorized substances. Latvia is already the third Presidency working on the proposal for Regulation on organic agriculture, and an intense work has been performed to enable Ministers of Member States to agree on a compromise decision at the coming meeting.
At the meeting of June 16, the Ministers will hear the European Commission on fishing opportunities in 2016. The Latvian Presidency would like to start a dialogue on general principles for determination of fishing opportunities for the year 2016 to ensure a joint approach to different regions and stocks as well as the basis for further discussions in the autumn of 2015 and end of the year. The discussion will be the basis for commencement of the Council’s consultations with producer organizations and the European Parliament.
The Council has planned to also listen to the Commission’s information, regarding mandatory indication of the place of origin in labeling of milk and meat, other than bovine, pork, mutton, goat and poultry meat products. The Commission’s information will be the basis for the decision as to whether new mandatory labeling requirements must be worked out for the origin of a product.
Furthermore, at the Council meeting, Estonia have intended the discussion on a strained situation in fish processing, caused by the ban Russia introduced on June 4, forbidding Estonia and Latvia to import fish products to Russian Federation. The ban is based on an argument that Russian veterinary and food inspectors have found deficiencies in the control system of fish processing establishments in Estonia and Latvia.
This will be the last EU Council of Ministers for Agriculture and Fisheries chaired by Latvia while holding office as the Presidency of EU Council.
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