Position Papers

COCERAL supports Sustainable Food Systems, harmonised at the international level

COCERAL has recently gave support and perspectives on a joint, multi-stakeholder letter (31 partners), regarding the upcoming framework legislation for Sustainable Food Systems (SFS).

Among the concerns raised in the letter:

  • the vagueness of the legislation aim, according to the info shared so far by the Commission. Definitions are welcome, but principles and objectives are not clear. Constructive collaboration is welcome.
  • Policy coherence and interdisciplinary approach are not always present.
  • Availability and affordability of food (how to solve the trade-off between food sustainability and food security) must form part of the framework.
  • Global world and international aspects of trade – the legislation must fly at the international level.

The letter was also discussed during the Advisory Group on Sustainable Food Systems (AGSFS) on 12 May, at the DG SANTE premises,  with the Commission Officials in charge  for Food Sustainability. On this occasion, the Commission made clear that the regulatory framework for SFS will follow the General Food Law on Food Safety (Reg. (EU) 178/2002) blueprint,  with a general legislation and then more detailed implementing regulations to come.

In terms of regulatory timeline on a legislative Framework for Sustainable Food Systems, as per the “Farm to Fork” Strategy Action Plan:

-              The Impact Assessment is ongoing, after a negative opinion from the Regulatory Scrutiny Board- this however will not require additional (research of) data.

-              There are gaps of the law in particular on the internal market dimension. Whenever national legislations have emerged in the meantime, they must be put under the EU framework.

-              Definitions will be there along with Principles that should guide the revision of topical sectoral legislations.

-              Meeting with stakeholders will be scheduled at a later stage, to get input on the legal proposal (possibly, end of June)

-              The Regulation will be published in September.

Coceral has participated in the Impact assessment study of the Commission, and has stressed since the beginning the need to work on policy coherence at the international level.