Legal Aspects of the Use of Plant Strengtheners (Biostimulants) in Europe

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LA TORRE, A., V. BATTAGLIA and F. CARADONIA, 2013. Legal aspects of the use of plant strengtheners (biostimulants) in Europe. Bulg. J. Agric. Sci., 19: 1183-1189


Some EU member states allow the use in agriculture of a class of substances, known as plant strengtheners, under national laws. Plant strengtheners (biostimulants) enhance the resistance of plants to harmful organisms and protect plants against non-parasitic impairments. They are “borderline” products because the boundaries between plant protection products and fertilizers are not clear and univocal. There is no European regulatory framework for these substances. This fragmented and contradictory situation can prejudice the fair productive competitiveness of agriculture systems in Europe.

Key words: grey zone, borderline products, plant strengtheners, biostimulants
Abbreviations: BVL: Bundesamt für Verbraucherschutz und Lebensmittelsicherheit (Federal Office of Consumer Protection and Food Safety); CTGB: College voor de toelating van gewasbeschermingsmiddelen en biociden (Board for the Authorisation of Plant Protection Products and Biocides); D.P.R.: Decree of President of Republic; D.M.: Ministerial Decree; EBIC: European Biostimulants Industry Council; EC: European Community; EEC: European Economic Community; EOCC: European Organic Certifiers Council; EU: European Union; NF: Norme Française; OMDF: Otros medios de defensa fitosanitaria; PflSchG: Pflanzenschutzgesetz (Plant Protection Act); RUB: Regeling Uitzondering Bestrijdingsmiddelen (Regulation exemptions Pesticide); WGB: Wet Gewasbeschermingsmiddelen en Biociden

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