Harmonisation of EU legislation on fertilising materials: AFCOME’s opinion


AFCOME and EFBA (European Fertiliser Blenders Association) are advocating their position on the proposed harmonisation of EU legislation on the marketing of fertilisers.

At its meeting on 17th March 2014, the European Commission’s Fertilisers WG proposed a draft simplified regulation to facilitate the free movement of products within the European Union, within the context of the new approach to harmonisation.

It involves an excessive simplification that would suppress the national naming, specification and marking standards and would replace REC 2003/2003, which sets out specification, naming and marking rules. All that would remain would be minimum nutrient contents (lower) and safety rules (heavy metals), with stricter requirements, for example, for the cadmium content of phosphate fertilisers.

Marketers would consequently have no option but to set up a “self-certification” system, requiring controls and analyses to be conducted per batch on all products. However, the conformity of a product is currently based on the reference to a standard, the conformity of raw materials (for fertiliser blends), the traceability of operations and periodic random controls.

Finally, a product registration and evaluation system will need to be set up. Which body will be responsible for this in Europe (EFSA, ECHA) or France (ANSES)?

Many questions remain unanswered for a text that would come into being in 2018 at the earliest.

AFCOME’s position on the future harmonised REC
New Approach applied to the revised Fertilisers Regulation
Essential safety and quality requirements for fertilising materials