International Coffee Agreement 2007

The European Union published on the 27th March 2008 the Council decision on the signing and conclusion by the European Community of the International Coffee Agreement 2007.

On 28th September 2007 the International Coffee Council (ICC) adopted the text of a new 2007 Agreement replacing the International Coffee Agreement 2001 which had been extended to 30th September 2008. In the discussions on the Agreement the Community negotiated on the basis of the negotiating mandate and directives proposed by the Commission and approved by the Council on 29th January 2007.

To date, in the light of the discussions and the content of the new instrument, which reflects the position defended by the Community, the Commission considers the International Coffee Agreement 2007 should be signed and the instrument of conclusion be deposited with the Headquarters of the International Coffee Organisation in London, designated as Depository by ICO Resolution N° 436 of 25 January 2008.

From a legal viewpoint, it should be noted that following the proposal of the Commodities Working Group of the Council (PROBA), the Council has recognised in September 2007 that the main objective of the new International Coffee Agreement of 2007 was remaining the promotion of the international cooperation on trade in coffee, which falls within the exclusive competence of the European Community. In this case, the new International Coffee Agreement of 2007 should be concluded by the European Community, according to Article 133 of the Treaty.

The objective of this Agreement is to strengthen the global coffee sector and promote its sustainable expansion in a market-based environment for the betterment of all participants in the sector. SOme of the specific objectives include:

  • Promoting international cooperation on coffee matters.
  • Facilitating the expansion and transparency of international trade in all types and forms of coffee, and promoting the elimination of trade barriers.
  • Promoting training and information programmes designed to assist the transfer to Members of technology relevant to coffee.

What is coffee?

Coffee means the beans and cherries of the coffee tree, whether parchment, green or roasted, and includes ground, decaffeinated, liquid and soluble coffee:

  • Roasted coffee means green coffee roasted to any degree and includes ground coffee. (Green coffee means all coffee in the naked bean form before roasting).
  • Decaffeinated coffee means green, roasted or soluble coffee from which caffeine has been extracted;
  • Liquid coffee means the water-soluble solids derived from roasted coffee and put into liquid form; and
  • Soluble coffee means the dried water-soluble solids derived from roasted coffee.