New organic food labelling logo comes into force today

New EU rules on organic food labelling - including the requirement to display the new EU organic "Euroe leaf" logo- come into force today.

The so-called "Euro-Leaf" will now be obligatory on pre-packaged organic food products that have been produced in any of EU Member States and meet the necessary standards.

Other private, regional or national logos will continue to appear alongside the EU label.

The logo stays optional for non-packed and imported organic products.

In addition to the logo, the new labelling rules also include the compulsory indications of place of farming of the products' ingredients and code number of the body that had been in charge of the controls.

Operators have a two-year transition period to comply with these new labelling rules.

EU Commissioner for Agriculture & Rural Development Dacian Ciolos said:  "Our hope is that the new EU logo can develop into a widely recognised symbol of organic food production across the EU, providing consumers with confidence that the goods are produced entirely in-line with the strict EU organic farming regulations."

"I hope that these changes will give a boost to the organic farming sector, but also further enhance consumer protection". 

The "Euro-leaf" design shows the EU stars in the shape of a leaf against a green background passing two clear messages for consumers: Nature and Europe.

The design has been registered by the Commission as a collective trade mark.

Designed by German student Dušan Milenkovic, the logo emerged as the clear winner of an on-line poll, following a competition aimed at EU art students.

The winner and the runners-up in this competition are being honoured at an official award ceremony in Brussels on 19 July 2010 - organised to coincide with the July 19/20 Conference on the future of the Common Agriculture Policy.

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