Members' Research Service By / July 12, 2023

Revision of EU marketing standards for certain ‘breakfast’ directives [EU Legislation in Progress]

First introduced in the early days of the common agricultural policy, the European Union (EU) marketing standards are based on the so-called common market organisations (CMOs) .

© feirlight / Adobe Stock

Written by Ivana Katsarova (1st edition).

Marketing standards established by the ‘breakfast directives’ are more than 20 years old. Over time, food markets have evolved substantially, driven by innovation and changes in consumer demand and expectations. Taking this shift into account, on 21 April 2023 the European Commission proposed to update some of the rules governing a set of directives on food products – the ‘breakfast’ directives – including the marketing standards they introduced. The revision also echoes key messages of the EU’s ‘farm to fork’ strategy, which addresses the challenges of sustainable food systems and recognises the strong links between ‘healthy people, healthy societies and a healthy planet’. Changes include modifying the definition of marmalade, cutting sugar in fruit juice and introducing stricter origin labelling for honey and clearing the way for the manufacture of lactose-free evaporated milk.

In their feedback, most stakeholders focused on honey labelling, voicing disappointment with the proposal’s lack of ambition and calling for indicating each country of origin, in descending order, and its respective share of honey. In Parliament, the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) is handling the file, with Alexander Bernhuber (EPP, Austria) as rapporteur.


Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and the Council amending Council Directives 2001/110/EC relating to honey, 2001/112/EC relating to fruit juices and certain similar products intended for human consumption, 2001/113/EC relating to fruit jams, jellies and marmalades and sweetened chestnut purée intended for human consumption, and 2001/114/EC relating to certain partly or wholly dehydrated preserved milk for human consumption
Committee responsible:Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI)COM(2023) 0201
Rapporteur:Alexander BERNHUBER (EPP-AU)2023/0105(COD)
Shadow rapporteurs:Ordinary legislative procedure
(COD) (Parliament and Council
on equal footing – formerly ‘co-decision’)
Next steps expected: Draft report
Honey, beehives and beekeepers in the EU
Honey, beehives and beekeepers in the EU

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