EU and Colombia enter talks for deal on organic products

By Kizzi Nkwocha

- Last updated on GMT

Any future agreement on trade in organic products between the EU and Colombia is likely to take into account a mutual recognition of each other's production rules and controls systems. (© iStock.com)
Any future agreement on trade in organic products between the EU and Colombia is likely to take into account a mutual recognition of each other's production rules and controls systems. (© iStock.com)

Related tags: Organic products, European union

The European Commission (EU) and the Government of Colombia have started talks aimed at securing a bilateral agreement on trade in organic products, it has been announced. 

The deal will result in a larger market for organic farmers as well increasing the amount of organic products available in both the EU and Colombia.

Phil Hogan, EU Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, said: “The organic sector continues to be one of the most dynamic production sectors the EU agri-food sector, and Colombia has great potential to develop opportunities for organic farmers and businesses, with the guarantee for the consumer of a solid control system.

“We have to be open to examine means of technical dialogue and cooperation between the EU and Colombia on matters such as organics".

Organic opportunities

organic produce
In recent years the value of the EU market has grown by more than 6% a year with sales of organic products totaling some € 22.2 billion in 2013. (© iStock.com)

Both the European Union and Colombia are said to be examining each other's organic legislation for areas of common interest.

FoodNavigator understands any future agreement on trade in organic products between the EU and Colombia is likely to take into account a mutual recognition of each other's production rules and controls systems.

The agreement will also reduce administrative burden for producers and operators in both the EU and Columbia while fostering technical dialogue and cooperation between both parties.

Aurelio Iragorri Valencia, Colombian Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, told reporters: "This agreement will be an important step in strengthening our economic relationship with the European Union in one of the fastest-growing agricultural sectors.

“The development of organic production is very important for farmers and rural communities in Colombia as it provides, on the one hand, for a sustainable development of Colombia's rural areas and, on the other hand, it contributes to increasing welfare of the rural population by providing access to differentiated high value added markets".

He added: "We welcome the cooperation and dialogue with the European Union for the development of the organic sector in Colombia. A future agreement on trade in organic products would represent a great opportunity for farmers and businesses and contribute to world-wide recognition of Colombia's organic produce".

The EU market for organic products amounts to some 40% of the world market – second only to the USA (43%). In recent years the value of the EU market has grown by more than 6% a year with sales of organic products totaling some € 22.2 billion in 2013.

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