European Food Regulation After Enlargement: Should Europe's modes of regulation provide for more flexibility?
Title: European Food Regulation After Enlargement: Should Europe's modes of regulation provide for more flexibility?
Author: ZUREK, Karolina
Citation: Florence, European University Institute, 2010
Series/Number: EUI PhD theses; Department of Law
This thesis aims to present a critical legal perspective on the current direction of European Union (EU) food safety regulation. Through an analysis of three regulatory mechanismsmutual recognition, scientific risk analysis and standardisation-combined with a study of the evolution of food legislation in the EU, I seek to show how the current framework fails to face new challenges, such as the globalization of world trade and the last two enlargements. In particular, the thesis focuses upon the case of a newly acceded EU member state, namely Poland. The main argument presented in the thesis is that an enlarged and more diversified Europe must not disregard the numerous socio-economic implications of market regulation. If not properly acknowledged and reflected in the regulatory scheme, the mismatch between market regulation and socio-economic factors can lead to a kind of gradual "disembedding" of the regulatory framework, in the Polanyian sense of the term. This is of critical importance as the EU project is not one-dimensionally geared towards securing greater European unity, but equally concerned with preserving unique European diversity-in the field of food as well as in other aspects. I am thus suggesting that the existing regulatory approach can be opened up to include a wider set of relevant socio-economic implications, allowing for protection of diversity while aiming for greater homogeneity. The legal system for the regulation of food can be rebalanced to become more flexible and responsive by shifting the use of existing regulatory mechanisms, in order to diversify regulatory intervention. First, this would require improvement of application of the risk analysis model, in order to guarantee inclusion of valid socio-economic concerns in the decision-making process. Second, it would also entail reliance on managed mutual recognition in those areas where protection of diversity does not collide with protection of consumers (for example, where either longstanding trust has been available or national codes have provided sufficient safety guarantees), and where consequently imposition of strict standardization is not necessary. Due to legitimate concerns with crisis, the regulatory framework for food in Europe has generated a bias against diversity leading to unforeseen and unintended consequences. This thesis argues that this need not be so.
LC Subject Heading: Food -- Safety measures -- European Union countries; Food law and legislation -- European Union countries
Defense date: 25/06/2010; Examining Board: Mads ANDENAS (University of Oslo) Marise CREMONA (EUI) Christian JOERGES (Supervisor, former EUI and University of Bremen) Ellen VOS (University of Maastricht)
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