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Parliamentary questions
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26 April 2021
E-001124/2021(ASW)
Answer given by Mr Wojciechowski
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-001124/2021

Member States will start notifying prices for table olives as of this year only(1), which will allow the Commission to start monitoring prices development. According to Eurostat, annual imports from third countries into Greece have been stable at around 10 000 tonnes since 2016, representing 5% of Greek production.

The EU supports the olive oil and table olives sector through work programmes(2). Other options for support exist under the rural development measures(3), such as risk management tools aiming among other to address income drops . Because of the COVID-19 outbreak, the European Commission adopted a Temporary Framework(4) to enable the use of the full flexibility foreseen under state aid rules to support the economy. Greece notified support to farmers of Kalamon table olives in October 2020(5).

Regulation (EU) No 1308/20132 is based on the principle of free formation of selling prices. Nevertheless, agricultural producers may strengthen their bargaining power in the chain by e.g. organising themselves in recognised producer organisations (POs) and associations of POs. In derogation from Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU, these entities can plan production and sell products of their members at a joint price under the conditions provided for in Article 152(1) of Regulation (EU) No 1308/2013.

The Protected Designation of Origin ( PDO) of Ελιά Καλαμάτας (Elia Kalamatas) does not prevent the marketing of table olives from the ‘Kalamon’ variety, as already explained in the context of a previous parliamentary question(6). In a number of countries, including Greece, ‘Kalamata’ has been recognised as a synonym of ‘Kalamon’ for the variety of olives, which is grown extensively outside the delimited area of the PDO.

(1)Regulation (EU) 2017/1185 of 20 April 2017 laying down rules for the application of Regulations (EU) No 1307/2013 and (EU) No 1308/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council as regards notifications to the Commission of information and documents and amending and repealing several Commission Regulations (OJ L 171, 4.7.2017, p. 113).
(2)Regulation (EU) No 1308/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 establishing a common organisation of the markets in agricultural products and repealing Council Regulations (EEC) No 922/72, (EEC) No 234/79, (EC) No 1037/2001 and (EC) No 1234/2007, and, in particular, its Article 29 et seq. on programmes to support the olive oil and table olives sector (OJ L 347, 20.12.2013, p. 671-854).
(3)2014GR06RDNP001 — Regulation (EU) No 1305/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December 2013 on support for rural development by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) and repealing Council Regulation (EC) No 1698/2005 (OJ L 347, 20.12.2013, p. 487‐548).
(4)Communication from the Commission — Temporary framework for state aid measures to support the economy in the current COVID-19 outbreak, (OJ C 91I, 20.3.2020, p. 1), as amended by Commission Communications C(2020) 2215 (OJ C 112I, 4.4.2020, p. 1), C(2020) 3156 (OJ C 164, 13.5.2020, p. 3), C(2020) 4509 (OJ C 218, 2.7.2020, p. 3), C(2020) 7127 (OJ C 340I, 13.10.2020, p. 1) and C(2021) 564 (OJ C 34, 1.2.2021, p. 6), https://ec.europa.eu/competition/state_aid/what_is_new/covid_19.html
(5)State aid SA.58929 (2020/N) — Greece
(6)https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-8-2017-000459-ASW_EN.pdf
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