The proposal of the new legislative framework of the Republic of Serbia in the field of processing aids in food production, food for special groups and food with altered nutritional composition was drafted in the framework of support provided by the PLAC III project to the competent Ministry of Health.
Project support focused on the transposition and implementation of European Union laws in this area, which falls under the negotiating chapter 12. The relevant EU legislation consists of six regulations and three directives, which regulate the area in detail.
Bylaws that will enable harmonisation with the Union acquis were presented at a workshop held on 19 May 2021. Project expert Bojan Vidović said that the legal gap analysis of the harmonisation of Serbian legislation with EU regulations shows that the existing legal framework in a great part provides a good basis for further harmonisation, especially the Law on Food Safety and regulations arising from it. Further harmonisation will be done through bylaws, he said. Vidović shared Croatia’s experiences, saying that the European Commission, even after the country’s admission to membership, is reviewing the national legislation to see how the Union’s acquis is applied.
Vidović stressed that it was important to adopt a multi-year plan of official controls, and for some categories of food, an annual plan of controls, which is prescribed by the new Regulation 2017/625 on official controls. Monitoring the placing on the market of certain categories of food is a useful tool in planning and carrying out controls.
Project expert Tatjana Stamatović presented the proposal of the new legal framework of the Republic of Serbia in the field – proposals of three rulebooks developed within the PLAC III project support. Bylaws will enable harmonisation with Union acquis. These are the proposals of the Rulebook on food for specific population groups, the Rulebook on food with altered nutritional composition and the Rulebook on aids in food production.
The draft Guide to the production of gluten free food was also presented at the workshop. The representative of the Ministry of Health, Mirjana Veljković, said that special attention would be paid to that area because the Ministry cooperates with the Association for Celiac Disease, which warns of existing irregularities. Apart from the representatives of the Ministry of Health, the workshop was also attended by representatives of the Ministry of Agriculture, the Institute of Public Health of Serbia, the Institute of Public Health of Vojvodina, the Serbian Chamber of Commerce and the Serbian Celiac Association as well as food producers’ representatives.