Organic Rules and Certification

Contamination, buffer zones, conventional agriculture - UK Soil Association Organic Standards 2005

Padel, Susanne and Lowman, Steve (2005) Contamination, buffer zones, conventional agriculture - UK Soil Association Organic Standards 2005. [Organic rules - Differences between other regulations/standards and EEC No 2092/91]

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Summary

Where organic crops are grown next to non-organic crops, there must be an effective windbreak if there is any risk of spray drift or other contamination. This buffer zone must be 10 metres wide, or increased to 20 metres if the organic crop is next to a sprayed orchard. Otherwise, there must be a buffer zone of specified width, within which the crops cannot be sold as organic. Soil Association Organic Standards. Paragraphs 3.7.2-3.7.4.

Difference

Soil Association standards are very precise. They require that, where organic crops are growing next to non-organic crops, there must be an effective windbreak if there is any risk of spray drift or other contamination. Otherwise, there must be a buffer zone, within which the crops cannot be sold as organic. EU Regulation 2092/91 states only that the organic unit must have land parcels and production that are clearly separate from non-organic units.

Justification

Soil Association standards are intended to minimise health risks that may result from the contamination of organic crops with prohibited inputs by minimising the amounts carried onto the holding by the wind. To be more effective in this purpose, the minimum requirements to achieve it are specified, whereas EU Regulation leaves the purpose and the means open to interpretation.

EU Regulation

Annex III - Minimum inspection Requirements/precautionary measures > Specific provisions
Annex I. Principles of organic production and processing > Care of environment - not in EC Reg > Contamination with pesticides/GMO

Item type:Organic rules - Differences between other regulations/standards and EEC No 2092/91
Subjects:General areas of Organic Agriculture > Organic integrity
Pollution risks/non permitted inputs > Protection against contamination
Pollution risks/non permitted inputs
Country/Standard: Europe > UK > Soil Association Organic Standards
Principles:Principle of care
Principle of health
ID Code:225
Deposited By:INVALID USER
Deposited On:09 Nov 2005
Last Modified:24 Nov 2008 08:19

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