GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF THE COUNCIL
Brussels, 18 May 2000
Working document DENLEG/2000/10
Subject: Proposal for a Council Directive relating to honey
Delegations will find herewith the new Presidency compromise text concerning the abovementioned proposal; positions of delegations are not mentioned.
This text consists of:
As part of the compromise, the term "baker's honey" of the English version will be translated in the other language versions as follows:
Proposal for a Council Directive relating to honey
THE COUNCIL OF THE EUROPEAN UNION,
Having regard to the treaty establishing the European Community, and in
particular Article 37 (Ex Article 43). thereof,
Having regard to the proposal from the Commission (OJ C 231, 9.8.1996, p. 10),
Having regard to the opinion of the European Parliament (OJ C 279, 1.10.1999, p. 91),
Having regard to the opinion of the Economic and Social Committee (OJ C 56, 24.2.1997, p. 20),
6a. aucun pollen ou autre constituant particulier du miel ne doit être retiré, sauf si cela est inévitable lors de l’élimination de matières organiques et inorganiques étrangères; cette dernière peut être réalisée par filtration; lorsque cette filtration conduit à l’élimination d’une quantité significative de pollen, il est nécessaire d’en informer correctement le consommateur par une mention d’étiquetage appropriée;
6b. le miel dont la dénomination est complétée par des indications ayant trait à une origine florale ou végétale, régionale, territoriale ou topographique, ou par des critères de qualité spécifiques, ne peut avoir été additionné de miel filtré, et qu'afin d'améliorer la transparence du marché, l'étiquetage des miels filtrés ou destinés à l'industrie doit être obligatoire pour toute transaction dans le marché en vrac;
7a. it is desirable to take account of the work achieved on a new Codex standard for honey, adjusted, as appropriate, to the specific requirements of the Community;
HAS ADOPTED THIS DIRECTIVE
This Directive shall apply to the products defined in Annex I. These products must meet the requirements set out in Annex II.
Directive 79/112/EEC shall apply to the products defined in Annex I, subject to the following conditions:
1. The term of "honey" shall be applied only to the product defined in Annex I (1) and must be used in trade to designate that product.
2. The product names referred to in Annex I (2 and 3) shall apply only to the products defined therein and must be used in trade to designate them. These names may be replaced by the simple product name "honey", except in the case of filtered honey, comb honey, chunk honey or cut comb in honey and baker's honey.
2a. Where baker's honey has been used as an ingredient in a compound foodstuff, the term "honey" may be used in the product name of the compound food instead of the term "baker's honey". However, in the list of ingredients, the full term as referred to in Annex I, Part 3 shall be used.
3. a) The country or countries of origin where the honey has been harvested shall be indicated on the label.
However, if the honey originates in more than one Member State or third country that indication may be replaced with one of the following, as appropriate:
3. b) For the purpose of Directive 79/112/EEC and in particular Articles 13, 14, 16 and 17 thereof, the particulars to be indicated according to subparagraph (a) shall be considered as indications according to Article 3 of that Directive.
In the case of baker's honey and filtered honey, bulk containers, packs and trade documents shall clearly indicate the full product name, as referred to in Annex I, Part 1, point (b) 8 and Part 3.
The Commission may adopt methods to permit verification of compliance of honey with the provisions of this Directive. These methods shall be adopted in accordance with the procedure laid down in Article 6(2). Until the adoption of such methods, Member States shall, whenever possible, use internationally recognised validated methods such as those approved by Codex Alimentarius to verify compliance with the provisions of this Directive.
For the products defined in Annex I, Member States shall not adopt national provisions not provided for by this Directive.
The measures necessary for the implementation of this instrument relating to the matters referred to below shall be adopted in accordance with the regulatory procedure set out in Article 6(2):
1. The Commission shall be assisted by the Standing Committee on Foodstuffs (hereinafter referred to as "the Committee").
2. Where reference is made to this paragraph, Articles 5 and 7 of Decision 1999/468/EC shall apply.
The period laid down in Article 5(6) of Decision 1999/468/EC shall be set at [three] months.
3. The Committee shall adopt its rules of procedure.
Directive 74/409/EEC is hereby repealed with effect from (18 months after the entry into force of this Directive).
References to the repealed Directive shall be construed as references to this Directive.
Member States shall bring into force the laws, regulations and administrative provisions necessary to comply with this Directive before (18 months after the entry into force of this Directive). They shall immediately inform the Commission thereof.
The provisions shall be applied so as to:
However, the marketing of products which fail to conform to this Directive and labelled before (30 months after the entry into force of this Directive) in accordance with Directive 74/409/EEC shall be permitted until stocks are exhausted.
When Member States adopt these provisions, these shall contain a reference to this Directive or shall be accompanied by such reference at the time of their official publication. The procedure for such reference shall be adopted by Member States.
This Directive shall enter into force on the twentieth day following that of its publication in the Official Journal of the European Communities.
This Directive is addressed to the Member States.
PRODUCT DESCRIPTIONS AND DEFINITIONS
1. Honey is the natural sweet substance produced by Apis mellifera bees from the nectar of plants or from secretions of living parts of plants or excretions of plant sucking insects on the living parts of plants, which the bees collect, transform by combining with specific substances of their own, deposit, dehydrate, store and leave in honeycombs to ripen and mature.
2. The main types of honey are as follows:
(a) According to origin:
1. Blossom honey or Nectar honey
Honey obtained from the nectar of plants.
2. Honeydew honey
Honey obtained mainly from excretions of plant sucking insects (Hemiptera) on the living part of plants or secretions of living parts of plants.
(b) According to mode of production and/or presentation:
3. Comb honey
Honey stored by bees in the cells of freshly built broodless combs or thin comb foundation sheets made solely of beeswax and sold in sealed whole combs or sections of such combs.
4. Chunk honey or cut comb in honey
Honey which contains one or more pieces of comb honey.
5. Drained honey
Honey obtained by draining decapped broodless combs.
6. Extracted honey
Honey obtained by centrifuging decapped broodless combs.
7. Pressed honey
Honey obtained by pressing broodless combs with or without the application of moderate heat not exceeding 45°C.
8. Filtered honey
Honey obtained by removing foreign inorganic or organic matter in such a way as to result in the significant removal of pollen.
3. Baker's honey
Honey, which is a) suitable for industrial uses or as an ingredient in other foodstuffs which are then processed and b) may:
COMPOSITION CRITERIA FOR HONEY
Honey consists essentially of different sugars, predominantly fructose and glucose as well as other substances such as organic acids, enzymes and solid particles derived from honey collection. The colour of honey varies from nearly colourless to dark brown. The consistency can be fluid, viscous or partly to entirely crystallised. The flavour and aroma vary, but are derived from the plant origin.
When placed on the market as honey or used in any product intended for human consumption, honey shall not have added to it any food ingredient, including food additives, nor shall any other additions be made other than honey. Honey must as far as possible, be free from organic or inorganic matters foreign to its composition. With the exception of point 3 of Annex I, it must not have any foreign tastes or odours, have begun to ferment, have an artificially changed acidity or have been heated in such a way that the natural enzymes have been either destroyed or significantly inactivated.
Without prejudice to Annex I, part 2, point 8, no pollen or constituent particular to honey may be removed except where this is unavoidable in the removal of foreign inorganic or organic matter.
When placed on the market as honey or used in any product intended for human consumption, honey must meet the following composition criteria:
1.1 Fructose and glucose content (sum of both)
1.2 Sucrose content
2. Moisture content
3. Water-insoluble content
4. Electrical Conductivity
5. Free acid
6. Diastase activity and hydroxymethylfurfural content (HMF) determined after processing and blending
(a) Diastase activity (Schade scale)
- In general, except baker's honey: not less than 8
- Honeys with low natural enzyme content (e.g. citrus honeys) and an HMF content of not more than 15 mg/kg: not less than 3
- In general, except baker's honey: not more than 40 mg/kg (subject to the provisions of paragraph (a) second indent)
- Honey of declared origin from regions with tropical climate and blends of these honeys: not more than 80 mg/kg
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