Euro concerns on uncontrolled seed movement

Trade association urges rethink on plant reproductive material (RPM) recommendations.

THE European Potato Trade Association (Europatat) is raising concerns about the draft report on Plant Reproductive Material (PRM) which is set for a vote in the European Parliament’s Plenary next week.

The report, prepared by the Parliament’s Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI Committee), includes amendments that the organisation says could have negative consequences on the EU PRM market.

The proposed amendments will allow for a substantial part of PRM material to move around the European Union without any oversight from the Competent Authorities and without proper plant health checks.

Chair of the Europatat Seed Potato Commission Peter Ton said: “There’s a critical difference between various types of PRM. Seed potatoes and regular seeds have distinct characteristics and require different handling procedures. Seed potatoes carry a higher risk of spreading plant diseases, especially when transported over long distances.

“The Parliament’s position needs to acknowledge these differences. Uncontrolled movement of seed potatoes across the EU would be detrimental and have serious consequences.”

To address these and other concerns, a broad coalition of stakeholders representing the PRM sector and its users in the EU, including Copa-Cogeca, Euroseeds, Europatat, Coceral, the European Beet Growers (CIBE), and CEPM Maiz’Europe, co-signed a joint statement which emphasises the importance of maintaining the balance achieved in the original proposal from the European Commission.

They argue that the AGRI Committee report compromises this balance by introducing exemptions that could allow unchecked PRM to reach the market without proper assurances or traceability.

“This, in all likelihood, would lead to the establishment of a parallel, uncontrolled market that undermines the efforts of plant breeders and farmers to increase sustainability while ensuring food security in Europe,” the statement warns. “We urge the European Parliament’s Plenary to reconsider the amendments and revert back to the Commission’s original proposal to avoid future crisis,”, concluded Peter Ton, Chair of the Europatat Seed Potato Commission.”

The seeds of change
Seedling shortage and price rises in France
British Potato Review
Potato Review reports on new developments in all areas of crop production, storage, handling and packing, as well as scientific, technological and machinery innovations in the UK and overseas. We also keep readers abreast of consumer trends and legislation changes impacting on the industry.
Company Registered in England no. 2572212 | VAT registration No. GB 638 3492 15
Copyright © 2023 Warners Group Publications Plc