TRACES: Ensuring Traceability in Commodity Trade under EUDR

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Illustration of Palm oil plantation. Photo by: Sawit Fest 2021 / Afriadi Hikmal

PALMOILMAGAZINE, BRUSSEL – The European Union conducts extensive trade in animals and various commodities annually, necessitating careful consideration of food security concerns within its population of over 440 million.

In response to these challenges, the European Commission has undertaken several initiatives in recent years. Among these initiatives is the implementation of the Trade Control and Expert System (TRACES), an essential online platform designed to ensure the safety of the food chain.

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TRACES serves as an online platform developed specifically by the European Commission to manage health certifications for animals and plants. It plays a crucial role in overseeing imports of animals, food, and non-animal products into the continent as quoted from the official European Union Commission webpage.

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Furthermore, TRACES is instrumental in monitoring intra-European Union trade and facilitating exports of animals and related products from the continent.

TRACES has become useful tool, been used in about 90 countries within more than 113.000 users whole over the world. The system would facilitate to publish sanitation and phyto-sanitation certificates and other official documents needed in export activities, the movement of European Union intra, and animal exports and products.

The main goals of TRACES are, the first, to simplify certification process. It would enable every related producer to be fully involved digitally without paper, as the main priority of European Union Deforestation Regulation (EUDR) – Europe is fixed to digital era.

The second, to escalate transparency. TRACES would facilitate data, information, and document exchanges among many trades involved in and control authority. This would also simplify and accelerate administration procedures.

The third, food traceability and safety. For it is able to trace every animal’s movement, animal products, food and non-animal woof, and also plants, it would contribute to minimize the impacts of disease and enable (to get fast) response to serious risks in every food supply chain sector.

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The fourth, it would escalate the cooperation and coordination. It is believed, TRACE would make good collaboration among every country’s authority in European Union and non-European countries, the traders, and their competent authorities. “TRACES would enable to detect fake certificate fast, it would contribute to fight the fraud of food and escalate cooperation among authorities,” European Union Commission noted in its official page.

As quoted from the official page of European Union Commission, TRACES is available in many official languages and some non – European languages. It would facilitate the users (authority) as trade partners of non-European. The platform would be available for 24/7 free of charge. To access the system, it just needs internet connection and should log in the account of European Union.

By having TRACES, the European people trust that their meal has closely passed the supervision, confirmed the safety and quality. The system would escalate not only efficiency and transparency in animal and food product trades, but also reinforce the coopepration in food safety in international scale. (T2)

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