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Parliament adopts new law to fight global deforestation




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No country or product will be banned. However, companies can only sell their products in the EU after 31 December 2020 if they have a "due diligence statement" from the supplier confirming that it does not come form deforested lands or has caused forest degradation. This includes irreplaceable primary trees.

Companies will be required to confirm, as requested by the Parliament, that their products are compliant with the relevant legislation in the country of origin, including the laws governing human rights and the rights of indigenous people.


As per the original Commission's proposal, the products covered by this new legislation include: cocoa, coffee beans, palm oil, soya, and wood. This includes products that have contained, been fed these commodities, or were made with them (such as furniture, leather, and chocolate). MEPs added rubber, charcoal and printed paper products to the list of deforestation-free products during negotiations.

The Parliament has also defined forest degradation to include the conversion of natural regenerating or primary forests into plantations or other wooded areas.

Risk-based control

Within 18 months after the entry into force of this regulation, the Commission will use an objective, transparent and unbiased assessment to classify certain countries or portions thereof as low, standard or high risk. The due diligence process for products from low-risk nations will be simplified. Operators are subject to a proportional amount of checks based on the risk level of their country: 9% in high-risk, 3% in standard-risk, and 1% in low-risk.


Satellite monitoring tools and DNA analyses will be used to verify the origin of products.

The penalties for non-compliance must be proportionate, dissuasive, and at least 4% the annual turnover of the noncompliant trader or operator in the EU.

The new law passed with 552 votes against 44 and 43 abstentions.

After the vote Christophe Hansen (EPP/LU) stated: "Until now, our supermarket shelves were all too often filled with products that had been covered in the ashes from burned-down forests and irreversibly damaged ecosystems, and that had destroyed the livelihoods for indigenous people. This happened far too often without the consumers being aware. I'm relieved to know that European consumers will no longer unknowingly be complicit in deforestation by eating their chocolate bar or enjoying a well-deserved cup of coffee. This new law will not only be crucial in the fight against climate changes and biodiversity loss but also help us to break down barriers that prevent us from establishing deeper trade relationships with countries who share our environmental values.

Next steps

Now, the text must be officially endorsed by Council. The text will be published in the EU Official Journal, and it will enter into effect 20 days after publication.


According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization , between 1990 and 2020, 420 million hectares (an area larger than Europe) of forest were converted into agricultural use. EU consumption accounts for around 10% of global deforestation. More than two thirds are accounted for by palm oil and soya.

The Parliament used its prerogative under the Treaty in October 2020 to request the Commission to present legislation to stop EU-driven global forest destruction. The agreement with EU countries on the law was signed on 6 December 2022.

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