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Internal Market

PR(08)69: Iceland fails to incorporate rules in the field of organic production of foods


The EFTA Surveillance Authority has decided to deliver a reasoned opinion to Iceland for failure to incorporate a Regulation concerning organic production of foodstuffs[1]that should have been incorporated into the internal legal order of Iceland by 7 July 2007. Reasoned opinions have also been delivered to Iceland for failure to ensure implementation of two Directives in the field of food safety [2]that should have been implemented by 15 February 2008 and 1 April 2008. 

According to the Regulation subject to the abovementioned reasoned opinion organic products imported into the EEA are allowed to be placed on the EEA market labelled with a reference to organic farming if they have been produced in accordance with production rules and subject to inspection arrangements that are in compliance with, or equivalent to, EEA legislation. Third country operators who produce in direct compliance with EEA rules should be allowed to submit their activities to inspection bodies and inspection authorities recognised for this purpose.

One of the Directive that should have been implemented by Iceland refers to the use of flavouring substances in or on foodstuffs as well as the conditions for use articles intended to come into contact with food is regulated in the EEA. Since 2005, only those substances listed in the EEA-wide positive list of flavouring substances may be added to foods.

The other Directive lays down that food contact materials should be safe and not transfer their components into the foodstuffs in unacceptable quantities. To that end, migration limits have been established for plastic materials.

Delivering a reasoned opinion is the second stage in infringement proceedings. The EFTA Surveillance Authority may bring the matter before the EFTA Court if Iceland fails to take satisfactory measures within three months of receiving the reasoned opinion.

For further information, please contact:


Patricia González Gálvez
Senior Officer, Internal Market Affairs Directorate
Tel. (+32)(0)2 286 18 38

[1]Council Regulation (EC) No 1991/2006 of 21 December 2006 amending Regulation (EEC) No 2092/91 on organic production of agricultural products and indications referring thereto on agricultural products and foodstuffs.

[2]Commission Directive 2006/128/EC of 8 December 2006 amending and correcting Directive 95/31/EC laying down specific criteria of purity concerning sweeteners for use in foodstuffs and Commission Directive 2007/19/EC of j0 March 2007 amending Directive 2002/72/EC relating to plastic materials and articles intended to come into contact with food and Council Directive 85/572/EEC laying down the list of simulants to be used for testing migration of constituents of plastic materials and articles intended to come into contact with foodstuffs

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