The Federal Law No. 280-FZ On Organic Products and Amendments to Certain Legal Regulatory Acts of the Russian Federation (Law), which regulates the production, storage, transporting, labeling and sales of the organic products, was officially published on 03.08.20181.
The Law has been adopted in order to create a system of legal regulation for the organic agricultural industry. Previously the legislation did not take into account the unique features of organic agriculture, and, as a result, the Russian organic products was not competitive on the international market and the bad-faith producers were able to mark their products as organic, ecologic, biological, which was misleading for customers2.
The main provisions of Law are as follows:
The requirements for the production of organic products
Inter alia, it is not allowed:
- to use agrochemicals, animal growth and fattening stimulators etc., excluding those chemicals which are allowed for use by the Russian standards in the sphere of organic products production;
- to use the hydroponic method of plant growing;
- to mix organic products with non-organic during the storage and transportation of the organic products;
- to use the packaging, which may cause pollution of the environment and the organic products.
At the same time, it is necessary:
- to use only biological pesticide;
- to choose the breed or species of agricultural animals in accordance with their persistence to diseases and create conditions for their veterinary well-being and natural reproduction;
- to use only nutritionals, flavor intensifiers, vitamins and amino acids, which are allowed by the Russian standards in the sphere of organic products production and etc.
Confirmation of organic products compliance
Confirmation is effected in the form of voluntary certification along with the mandatory confirmation of organic products compliance in cases stipulated by the Acts of Eurasian Economic Union and legislation of the Russian Federation.
Labeling of organic products
Obtaining of the organic products production compliance certificate allows to label the products packaging with a special textual and graphic sign, which is intended to be a distinguishing mark for these type of products3. Labeling distinguishing mark of organic products without obtaining compliance certificate entails administrative liability for misinformation of customers.
Creation of the state register of the organic products producers
The register will include data on producers of the organic products and types of their products. The register data will be in the public access on the official web-site of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation.
Implementation of the rules on maintenance of organic agriculture business and organic products production
To implement the abovementioned rules transition period is established, during which it is not allowed to label package of raw products and food as organic. The duration of the transition period depends on the type of the organic product4.
The Law comes into force on January 1st, 2020.
Thus, the Law imposes a number of requirements on the producers in the organic agriculture business. The abovementioned provisions may cause some extra expenditures on production of organic products. Nevertheless, as it follows from the explanatory note to the Law, the novelties will decrease the number of bad-faith producers and will trigger the development and competitiveness of the organic agriculture in Russia5.
2Refer to: The Explanatory Note to the Bill On Organic Products and Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation // http://sozd.parliament.gov.ru/bill/372830-7
3The Mark will be developed by the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation. Now the rules on organic products marking are set forth in GOST 33980-2016, approved by the Oder of the Rosstandart No. 1744-st dated 22.11.2016.
4Refer to: section 4 of the GOST 33980-2016, approved by the Oder of the Rosstandart No. 1744-st dated 22.11.2016.
5Refer to: The Explanatory Note to the Bill On Organic Products and Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation // http://sozd.parliament.gov.ru/bill/372830-7