Committee Reports::Report No. 06 - Fertilisers, Approximation of Laws on Content: Pigmeat Prices::04 June, 1975::Report


1. The Joint Committee has considered the following three draft Community instruments which come under the aegis of the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries:—

(i) Proposal for a Council Directive on the approximation of the laws of the Member States concerning fertilisers (R/1030/75).

(ii) Proposal for a Council Regulation (EEC) supplementing Regulation No. 121/67/EEC as regards measures to be taken in the case of a substantial fall in prices for pigmeat (R/2406/74).

(iii) Proposal for a Council Regulation (EEC) laying down the general rules to be applied in the event of a substantial fall in pigmeat prices (R/3554/74).

2. Proposed Directive concerning fertilisers

The basic purpose of this proposed Directive is to ensure that the marketing of fertilisers in the Community is not hampered by divergent national laws regarding composition, identification, labelling and packaging. A fertiliser which complies with the proposed Directive and the Annexes thereto will be designated “EEC Fertiliser” and will be required, as far as marking and labelling are concerned, to conform only with the provisions specified therein. Member States will be obliged to ensure by sampling and analysis that the requirements of the proposed Directive will be complied with. There will also be provision for changes arising from technical progress to be made in the Directive’s provisions by the Commission acting by agreement with a technical committee which is to be established.

It is not anticipated that the implementation of this proposal will present difficulty for Ireland. The present practice of denoting nutrient contents by markings in form of elements can continue. In the matter of determining the permitted deviation of the measured value of a nutrient from its declared value, the tolerances specified in the proposed Directive will entail somewhat more rigorous standards than heretofore but the Joint Committee is advised that the trade should be able to meet the situation without undue difficulty.

The Joint Committee accordingly welcomes the proposal and would like to see it implemented as soon as possible. With the proposed application of natural gas in the industry there is a possibility of an increased export trade for this country in fertilisers and any steps to facilitate the promotion of intra-Community trade should be of benefit.

3. Proposed Regulations concerning pigmeat prices

The first proposal (R/2406/74) is to extend the scope of Regulation 121/67/EEC* (which is the basic Community instrument on the common organisation of the market in pigmeat) to enable the measures specified in the second proposal to be taken in the event of a substantial fall in pigmeat prices.

The second proposal (R/3554/74) cielincs a substantial fall as occurring when the average price is below the basic price, and sets out guidelines for determining whether the fall in prices is likely to continue. It also specifies the measures which may be taken, these being:—

(i) the promotion of pigmeat consumption by grant-assisted advertising and publicity and

(ii) the sale of pigmeat at reduced prices to particularly underprivileged consumers in EEC countries.

“Underprivileged consumers” arc not defined in the proposed Regulation.

It should be explained that when the average market price for pig carcases is and is likely to remain below the basic price intervention measures may be taken under Regulation 121/67/EEC.

At present the price of pigmeat on the Irish market is considerably higher than the basic price, and the number of pigs is not sufficient to meet the demand. Consequently, the proposed Regulations are unlikely to have any impact here for the present at least.


Chairman of the Joint Committee.

4th June, 1975.

*(O. J. Special Edition 1967, pages 46 et seq.).