Library of Congress

Law Library of Congress

The Library of Congress > Law Library > News & Events > Global Legal Monitor

Mexico/United States: Agreement on Establishment of Committee on Trade in Organic Products

(Nov. 17, 2016) In October 2016, agriculture authorities from the United States and Mexico announced a plan to establish a Joint Organic Compliance Committee in order to foster collaboration pertaining to trade in organic products between Mexico and the United States and to ensure the quality of such products. (Press Release, U.S. and Mexico Establish Committee to Support Organic Trade Partnership (Oct. 19, 2016), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) website.)

The USDA explains that Mexico and the United States are trying to achieve “equivalency in organic production,” and the new committee will work towards that goal by adopting the following measures for organic products:

  • establishment of requirements for import certifications in both nations, aimed at verifying every shipment of organic products between Mexico and the United States;
  • implementation of testing for chemical traces in the products, the results of which will be provided to regulatory authorities of both countries; and
  • engagement with certifiers in Mexico by discussing with them whether additional measures are necessary, such as appropriate policy guidance and training. (Id.)

Equivalency agreements allow organic products certified as such in one nation to be sold as organic in other participating countries, which decreases the costs from multiple inspections and certifications. (Id.)