Call for flexibility on EU MRLs (maximum residue limits)
Belgian officials have urged EU member states to avoid trade disputes over pesticide residues by adopting a "pragmatic" approach. EU-wide maximum residue limits (MRLs) are being introduced as part of the new EU pesticide MRL Regulation (396/2005 - Agrow No 516, p 7). Where the EU MRL has yet to be set, national MRLs are being used. However, "several" trade disputes have arisen due to inconsistencies between non-harmonised national MRLs, Belgian representatives said at a meeting of the EU Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health in June.