EU reportedly set to remain on track to deliver EUDR deforestation regulations as scheduled

Despite pressure from a significant number of EU nations, the European Commission is reportedly not planning to alter its projected timeline for implementing the much-anticipated EU/DR import regulations relating to key supply chains including cocoa markets, according to a fresh industry update, writes Neill Barston.

As previously reported by Confectionery Production, the regulations, which are due to come into force at the end of this year, have been designed to ensure that companies demonstrate that their goods have not been sourced from locations suffering deforestation.

EU environmental commissioner Virginijus Sinkevicius noted to an Ivory Coast cocoa cooperative that “at this moment, we are working to ensure the legislation is operational from the beginning of 2025,” reports the Reuters agency.

While there appeared to be comparatively broad consensus within Europe that the measures were necessary to deliver greater transparency, last month, a total of 20 of 27 European states pushed for date of implementation to be pushed back from its target date of December 2024. This has met with considerable concern within environmental organisations – which noted that the agreement was signed two years ago, giving nations a considerable period of time to prepare for the new frameworks.

The new law’s introduction timeframe has also faced criticism the Malaysian palm oil community, which has claimed that seeking to introduce the new standards from this year would have a major detrimental impact on its farming sector.

Beyond the issue of deforestation, linked legislation in parallel to these legal frameworks, namely the Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive, has also been put forward, which last month gained approval from EU members. This has centred on ensuring human rights are observed within companies supply chains, though this has yet to go through further stages before becoming European law.

These major pieces of legislation are likely to form key areas of discussion at the upcoming World Cocoa Conference in Brussels between 21-24, which will be focused on a central theme of delivering greater farmer income within the industry to ensure its future viability amid challenging market conditions.



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