New EU fertiliser regulation: “Dual use” for Plant Biostimulants and Plant Protection Products under debate in EU parliament

Date: 23 October 2017

 

Yesterday the upcoming EU fertiliser regulation and the future on CE marked fertilizing products were debated in the European Parliament.
Subject of the debate is a report of the Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection on the proposal for a regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down rules on the making available on the market of CE marked fertilising products and amending Regulations (EC) No 1069/2009 and (EC) No 1107/2009.

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The amendments under discussion contain significant changes, especially for the new Product Function Category (PFC) of Plant Biostimulants which also includes microorganisms. According to the current proposal, Part II of Annex I shall be amended, setting out the requirements for Plant Biostimulants as: “The plant biostimulant shall have the effects that are claimed on the label for the plant specified thereon. Where the plant biostimulant contains one or more ingredients that have been approved under Regulation (EC) No 1107/2009, the information provided during conformity assessment will provide compelling empirical evidence of the biostimulant effect, taking into account relevant parameters […]”
Regulation 1107/2009 shall be amended accordingly, defining Plant biostimulant as “a product containing any substance or micro-organism stimulating plant nutrition processes independently of its nutrient content, or any combination of such substances and/or micro-organisms, with the sole aim of improving one or more of the following characteristics of the plant or the plant rhizosphere: (a) nutrient use efficiency; (b) tolerance to abiotic stress; (c) crop quality traits."
The suggested amendments would close the regulatory gaps between biopesticides and biostimulants, allowing for an increase in product registrations.

For further information on biostimulants and the upcoming EU Regulation, please also refer to the special edition of SCC Newsletter No. 2/2016  on the Draft Fertilising Products Regulation (COM(2016) 157 final) or the critical review on current development of biostimulants by Dr Lars Huber in Agrow's supplement Biologicals 2017.

Please click here, to read the full text of the Committee report.
Dr Lars Huber, Head of Biostimulants, Fertiliser, IPM

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