On December 19th, 2018 a major achievement was reached when the European Trialogue (Commission, Council and Parliament) concluded a deal on the future EU rules against Unfair Trading Practices. The result of 5 years of intense advocacy work by civil society organizations.
Two years after entry into force, the new EU Directive will protect suppliers with an annual turnover up to EUR 350 million from unfair trading practices in food supply chains, covering both EU and non-EU suppliers, for example: late payments for perishable products, last minute order cancellations, unilateral or retroactive changes to supply agreements, the misuse of confidential information, and the retaliation or threat of retaliation against the supplier…
The Member States their enforcement authorities will have the power to initiative investigations (ex-officio) and will enable NGOs to introduce complaints when suppliers don´t dare to do it (key features of agreement are accessible here).
This is the result of a joint advocacy work conducted by multiple civil society organizations and platforms throughout Europe since 2013, in particular our partners Fair Trade Advocacy Office, the Make Fruit Fair campaign, Banana Link and Commerce Equitable France.
BASIC has contributed to their joint efforts through the publication of 2 studies that supported their campaign:
- in November 2014, we issued a report called “Who’s Got the Power” and a related video on the social and environmental consequences of the growing concentration of power in agrifood chains. The main results were presented in the European Parliament and supported by Olivier de Schutter, former United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food.
- in November 2015, we published another study on “Banana value chains in Europe and the consequences of Unfair Trading Practices” which was also presented in the European Parliament (see picture above).