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EOCC invitation for BioFach reception

by Redaktion (comments: 0)

Controls and certification of organic products contribute to the success of the organic products and the development of the organic sector. Private control bodies and control authorities conducting these controls and certification activities collaborate in day-to-day business with farmers, processors and traders, their associations, with authorities and consumers. These activities take place in an increasingly dynamic and international context. Within the European Organic Certifiers Council (EOCC), 49 members exchange knowledge and join forces to ensure and increase reliability of controls and certification in and outside Europe.
EOCC is constantly monitoring and providing feedback on the translation of established and “improved” policy into practice. Since history shows that despite the good intentions behind, they easily result in complex processes with high administrative burden for operators and certifiers. EOCC regrets to see that practical details are often not properly recognized or taken into account in dynamic development of standards or establishments of trade agreements. EOCC is convinced that collaboration with decision makers is a key factor to achieve clear and straightforward regulation that enables all stakeholders to develop in compliance with this regulation. 
Therefore, the current revision of the organic EU regulation 834/2007 together with the Commission´s impact assessment has been and remains an important topic for EOCC. As recognized expert group, EOCC provided solid, substantial and relevant input to official consultations, hearings and Advisory Groups. With an increasing commitment of the European policy makers towards a “quality-driven” basis of the future organic regulation, EOCC instantly shared first-hand information on topics as group certification, electronic certification or import schemes options in order to ensure that on-site expertise and experience is considered in the revised legislation. And another revision process could have a serious impact on the current organic control system: EOCC´s Working Group Regulation studies the impact of the revision of the Regulation on official controls (Regulation 882/2004) that is at present discussed in the European Parliament.
Another main topic for EOCC is the coherent application of a suitable and harmonized risk-based approach. With growing markets and supply chains, control and certification has to cover broadly and to focus efficiently. This requires for example the set up of meaningful risk-categories for when performing samplings to investigate residues of pesticides and other non-authorized substances. EOCC Task Forces are currently elaborating practical guidance for risk-based sampling on product chains in Europe and abroad. However, the risk-based approach regards also operators when establishing  preventive measures or authorities when harmonizing procedures on controls – as intended with the Regulation 392/2013. Entering into force in January 2014, new aspects for controls will apply as minimum requirements for sampling and rules for exchange of information. EOCC informs its members and provides support for implementation by technical fact sheets.

Last but not least, efficient and effective controls depend on the appropriate use of audit tools. Therefore, EOCC members share best practices and optimize their tool box together e.g. as in Working Group on Cross Checks.
The European Organic Certifiers´Council (EOCC) cordially invites you to attend its Lunch Reception on Wednesday, 12th of February, at Biofach 2014 for an update on certifiers´ leadership and substantial achievements. Pass by and enjoy the face-to-face exchange with the EOCC Board, Working Groups and members! More information on the event is available here. In order to facilitate the organisation of our event, please register here. We are looking forward to meeting you in Nürnberg!



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