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Information on cancellation of the so-called “birth certificates“

08/13/2014
 
On 26 June 2014 the Government repealed the Regulation No. 317/2012 Coll., stipulating document form on the origin of certain types of alcohol, distillate and certain types of spirits. The repeal shall enter into force as of 1 September 2014.
Pursuant to this Regulation the producers and sellers of alcohol were obliged to possess the so-called birth certificates proving origin of alcohol in spirits with alcohol content higher than 20 percent.
Food business operators had been obliged to document most of the requirements of the Government Regulation No. 317/2012 Coll., already before the Government Regulation No. 317/2012 Coll., was adopted. Specifically, this includes the requirements stipulated in Section 11 (2) (c) of the Act No. 110/1997 Coll., on foodstuffs and tobacco products and on amending and supplementing certain related acts, as amended by subsequent regulations, and the European Parliament and Council Regulation (EC) No. 178/2002, laying down general principles and requirements of food law, establishing the European Food Safety Authority and laying down procedures related to food safety. In Article 3 (15) of the EP and Council Regulation (EC) No. 178/2002 the term “traceability” is defined as follows: “possibility to find and trace a foodstuff, feed, food producing animal or substance in all stages of production, processing and distribution intended for incorporation into a foodstuff or feed or expected to be incorporated”.      
Food business operators had been obliged to keep documents proving from which entity raw materials had been purchased and to which entity a product had been sold (so-called step back, step forward) before the Government Regulation No. 317/2012 Coll. entered into force. 
The Regulation No. 317/2012 Coll., was issued in reaction to mass poisoning by spirits with high content of methanol and it stipulated a specific form of document of origin. The main goal of the Government Regulation No. 317/2012 Coll., at the end of 2012, was an accelerated restoration of proper functioning of alcohol and spirit drinks market in the Czech Republic. This action strengthened the guarantee of health safety of spirits put into circulation within the Czech Republic to final consumers, including guarantee of clear origin of raw material from which liquors are produced.
As a reaction to the methanol affair, the rules for production and distribution of spirits were tightened up. An important fact was approval of the Act No. 307/2013 Coll., on mandatory labelling of alcohol, introducing, among others, a new generation of control band with new protective features, data on exact content of alcohol in consumer package and with individual labelling of each control band. Each control band is registered in the control band register. 
Cancellation of birth certificates cancels only the prescribed form of the document of the origin of spirits set by the repealed Government Regulation 317/2012 Coll., not the documents of the origin of goods in accordance with Section 11 (2) (c) of the Act No. 110/1997 Coll. The traceability principle, as required by legal regulations, is not changed in any way.
Repealing the Regulation should relieve alcohol producers and sellers from administrative burden.