No Repeat Of Glyphosate Saga: There will not be a repeat of the Glyphosate saga, promises EU’s new committee on authorisation of pesticides.
The new special committee on pesticides started looking into the EU authorisation procedure during its first working meeting on 12 April.
MEPs discussed the state of play of the procedure with European Food Safety Authority executive director Bernhard Url and the European Commission.
Committee chair Eric Andrieu (S&D, France) said: “We must dare to do everything and not forbid ourselves on this real question of society: we are talking about the health of 500 million Europeans, 42% of foods are identified without pesticides… the margin is large.
“In December, when we will vote on our report, we will have to make a commitment to citizens that the food they eat and the air they breathe are not dangerous to their health.
“Our Special Committee must lay the foundations for new practices guaranteeing transparency and independence. Above all, it must restore citizens’ confidence in the European process.”
Co-rapporteur Bart Staes (Greens/EFA, Belgium) said: “This new committee gives us the opportunity to delve into the work of the different European and national agencies, the quality of the evidence used, the role of industry and the independence and transparency of the entire evaluation process.
“Protection of public health and the environment must be at the heart of EU decisions. We want to make sure there can no re-run of the glyphosate saga”
The EU re-authorised glyphosate for five years in November amid controversy around carcinogen claims.
“The re-authorisation of glyphosate highlighted some serious problems with the current process. We will now examine the evidence in detail and come forward with recommendations to make sure that the authorisation procedure for pesticides as a whole is fit for purpose, so that future decisions are fully transparent and respect the relevant EU regulation” Staes said.
Co-rapporteur Norbert Lins (EPP, Germany) said: “The main goal of the PEST-committee is to look at the authorisation procedure from every angle and to identify possible improvements based on a scientific approach.
“The Commission and EFSA gave us a good overview about the current legislation which was a good start to understand the process. Nevertheless we will need more input from all stakeholders, to see how the theory works in practice. It is of particular interest for me to put an effective and efficient process in place which does not only focus on transparency but ensures safety for environment and health and strengthens innovation” he added.
The special committee will hold its next meeting on the 26th of April.
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