Latest update on the EU Fertiliser Regulations (November 2017)
Where we are with the legislative process?
· European Parliament: Commission’s proposal was split under the competences of the AGRI, ENVI, ITRE and IMCO committees and then voted in each committee; Parliament’s plenary then voted the whole text on 24/10/17 (link to text here) defining the Parliament’s position
· The Council: member states are still discussing and close to achieve a compromise for a Council position; the associated documents will not be public until October 2018.
· Once the positions from the Parliament and the Council are ready, they will havetrilogue negotiations with the Council’s presidency on one side and the Parliament Rapporteur and shadows on the other, with technical support from the Commission. Trilogues are expected to take place during the 1st half of 2018, when the Regulation will enter into force.
· The application date is still being discussed by both sides, but it is expected that all measures should be applicable in the EU by 2020.
Fertilisers Working Group discussions
The Commission’s (DG GROW) Fertilisers Working Group met on 13.11.17. Relevant points discussed at the meeting include:
· The European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) is working on standards for organic products under TC 223 (with pressure from DG GROW to move fast), and there is a consultation open untill 15.01.2018; there will also be a minor 2nd consultation in 2018. The key request for industry is to check/fill the tables in the annexes. These standards will complement the regulation’s specific requirements (e.g. "Residual biogas potential” or "Total P”) by introducing EU wide methods to measure them.
· Technical Working Group STRUBIAS focusing on ashes, biochar and struvite will meet one more time in Seville and the JRC report will be out in late 2018.
· MICROBIOSTIM is a new technical sub WG that will be created for biostimulants under Fertilisers WG (similar to STRUBIAS).
· The Fertilisers WG is open for new NGOs to join.
EBA issues joint statement with other European organisations
A number of European organisations including EBA have recently issued a joint statementwith most Brussels based associations working on fertilisers, which focuses largely on the Parliament’s 1st position and partly on Council’s latest discussions. The statement underlines the importance of addressing a number of important outstanding issues in the proposed EU Fertilising Products Regulation. EBA will also issue its own statement which will be available soon.