Denmark to halve the number of laws on food and the environment

Danish companies, farmers and consumers will benefits from simpler and clearer laws on food and the
environment without having less protection, says the Ministry for Food and the Environment on its reform. The country’s minister for food and the environment, Esben Lunde Larsen, recently presented a proposal that would cut the number of laws relating to food and the environment from 95 to 43. According to a statement issued by the Ministry, the expert panel called for “a more logical structure” in the legislation and fewer laws, which would increase legal certainty. Under the proposal, a new Nature and Biodiversity Act could replace up to eight separate acts, such as the Hunting and Game Management Acts, Forestry Act and parts of the Road Safety Act. Meanwhile an overarching Environment Act would collate rules on preventing and controlling pollution. It would “provide for a simpler, coherent and more transparent regulation for the benefit of companies and authorities in particular,” said the Ministry. This act would replace parts of separate legislative acts on animals, fertilisation and possibly parts of the Marine Environment Act. A new Water Act would replace eight laws currently in force and, according to the panel, result in “a more holistic and coherent regulation that more closely matches the structure and focus of EU regulation.” However, the legislative restructuring will impact farmers more than food and beverage manufacturers as, like in other member states, Danish food regulations are based on EU law.