The issue of unfair trading practices (‘UTPs’) between businesses in the agricultural and food supply chain has been on the European Union (‘EU’) policy agenda for a long time. On 17 April 2019, Directive (EU) 2019/633 on unfair trading practices in business-to-business relationships in the agricultural and food supply chain (‘UTP Directive’) was adopted. The UTP Directive aims to introduce a minimum standard of protection against UTPs across the EU by outlawing certain practices imposed by stronger buyers on small, medium and mid-range sized suppliers of agri-food products. The Directive also requires each Member State to designate an authority (either a new or an existing authority) which enforces the prohibitions.
Member States were required to transpose the Directive by 1 May 2021 and apply it as of 1 November 2021. Due to the minimum harmonisation approach chosen, Member States can provide for stricter rules than the Directive. Member States could, for example, choose to broaden the scope of application or to expand the list of prohibited UTPs. Accordingly, the regulatory regimes of EU Member States in the field of UTPs could diverge significantly.
As a follow-up to its First UTP Roundtable (15 June 2016) and its Second UTP Roundtable (21 June 2018), the Consumer Competition and Market research institute of KU Leuven is organizing its Third UTP Roundtable on 13 January 2023 with a view to critically assessing the national implementations of UTP Directive in all EU Member States and examine the similarities and differences of these regimes, based on a questionnaire-based evaluation of the current state of play in the field of UTPs.
Registration: by filling out the registration form at www.pvthemis.be
More info in the leaflet.