STC Number - 276

Maximum residue levels for pesticides in cocoa

Maintained by: European Union
Raised by: Ecuador
Supported by:
First date raised: October 2008 G/SPS/R/53, paras. 13-14
Dates subsequently raised:
Number of times subsequently raised: 0
Relevant documents: Raised orally; RD/SPS/28/Rev.1
Products covered: 18 Cocoa and cocoa preparations
Primary subject keyword: Food safety
Keywords: Food safety; Human health
Status: Partially resolved
Solution: Information was received from Ecuador on the partial resolution of this STC.
Date reported as resolved: 02/11/2017

Extracts from SPS Committee meeting summary reports

In October 2008, Ecuador reported that it was concerned regarding the MRLs set for the limited number of pesticides used in cocoa production. These levels were difficult to fulfil and could result in the exclusion of Ecuadorian cacao from the EC market. For pesticides not explicitly identified in the EC Regulation, MRLs were set at 0.01 mg per kg. Ecuador requested the European Communities to assess the possibility of establishing a limit of 0.1 mg per kg for substances such as Diuron, Melathion, Difenoconozol and Tribufos, which were not explicitly identified within the regulation.
The European Communities recalled that Members had been fully informed of the new EC framework regarding residues of pesticides in plants. Third countries could also request that an import tolerance be established for any plant protection products that had not been approved for use in the European Communities. It was suggested that Ecuador establish contacts with the relevant officials in importing countries of the European Communities to explore the possibilities of having such import tolerances established.

In November 2017, the Secretariat informed that in September 2017 it had contacted all Members who had raised specific trade concerns (STCs) that had not been discussed in the previous year, to request an update on their status. In furtherance of this request, information was received from Ecuador on the partial resolution of this STC. The Secretariat indicated that the information received had been circulated in document RD/SPS/28 of 31 October 2017, and that the SPS IMS would be updated on this basis, using the date of the November 2017 SPS Committee meeting as the date of resolution of the relevant STCs.