STC Number - 5

Import requirements for wine

Maintained by: Brazil
Raised by: European Union
Supported by:
First date raised: May 1996 G/SPS/R/5 para. 13
Dates subsequently raised: March 1997 (G/SPS/R/7 para. 23)
Number of times subsequently raised: 1
Relevant documents: G/SPS/N/BRA/13/Rev.1 G/SPS/GEN/1269
Products covered: 2204 Wine of fresh grapes, including fortified wines; grape must other than that of heading 20.09.
Primary subject keyword: Food safety
Keywords: Equivalence; Food safety; Human health
Status: Resolved
Solution: In October 2013 (G/SPS/R/73, para. 3.59), the European Union reported that nine STCs, with one of them being this particular concern, had been resolved given that the measures in question were no longer considered by the European Union as barriers to trade (G/SPS/GEN/1269).
Date reported as resolved: 16/10/2013

Extracts from SPS Committee meeting summary reports

In May 1996, the representative of the European Communities expressed concern with regard to an apparent proposal by the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture (10 April 1996) on import requirements for wine. The proposed measure had not been notified in accordance with the SPS Agreement. The European Communities expressed concern that Brazil was apparently intending to require that establishments in exporting countries be inspected and approved by Brazilian authorities prior to any exports to Brazil taking place. The European Communities considered their own requirements regarding conditions for the production of wine within the European Communities to be at least equivalent to those in Brazil with respect to the safety of the product for the consumer. The representative of the European Communities stated that comments would be presented in writing to Brazil once an official SPS notification was made. The representative of Brazil stated that while he was aware that Brazil was considering a measure in this area, he did not have the necessary information on hand to make a substantive comment on the issue.

In March 1997, the representative of the European Communities brought the Committee's attention to a Brazilian notification regarding procedures to be observed by exporters of wine to Brazil, contained in notification G/SPS/N/BRA/13/Rev.1. It remained unclear to the European Communities what requirements exporters faced. The scientific rationale behind the requirement that individual establishments endeavouring to export wine to Brazil had to be inspected was questioned. Likewise, the representative of the European Communities expressed concern over certification requirements for individual consignments rather than general, generic type of certification. The nature of requirements asked of Brazilian producers themselves was questioned. The representative of Brazil noted that, in accordance with WTO rules, the proposed legislation would not be adopted before 16 May 1997, and that the full text of the proposed legislation was available at the Brazilian Enquiry Point. She maintained that the proposed legislation was in conformity with the SPS Agreement and was furthermore not substantially different from legislation in place in several European countries. Brazil remained open for bilateral discussions on the subject.

In October 2013 (G/SPS/R/73, para. 3.59), the European Union reported that nine STCs, with one of them being this particular concern, had been resolved given that the measures in question were no longer considered by the European Union as barriers to trade. These were detailed in G/SPS/GEN/1269. The European Union encouraged all Members to regularly update the list of STCs previously raised in the Committee so that updated information would be reflected in the Annual Report.