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Unilever and Weleda call on EU Commission to strengthen EU Soil Health Law

Sophie Smith
17 March 2023

Unilever and Weleda are among a number of companies to sign an open letter to the EU Commission, calling for the upcoming EU Soil Health Law to be more ambitious. 

The law was proposed in 2021 and is expected to be implemented in June this year, with the aim of protecting and restoring the health of European soils.

“With the health of European soils rapidly degrading, an ambitious soil health law is urgently needed,” the letter, which was signed by numerous farming organisations, academics and retail giants, explains.

"Healthy soils are fundamental to achieve the climate, biodiversity, water and zero pollution targets of the European Green Deal, and to support the EU’s Farm to Fork objectives and transition to a sustainable food system.

"It is fundamental to understand the cost-benefit structure of soil health monitoring and action: while the costs of soil health degradation to society, businesses and biodiversity are exponentially rising, the costs of soil health monitoring and soil health regeneration are rapidly decreasing."

The letter states that the EU Soil Health Law must include:

  • An unambiguous definition of soil health with indicators based on the newest soil science.
  • Ambitious and binding targets on achieving soil health.
  • Robust requirements on the sustainable use of soil.
  • A binding “zero net land take“ target.
  • A comprehensive, harmonised and legally anchored soil health monitoring and reporting system.
  • A strong governance framework for the Law's implementation and enforcement.

The news comes after over 15 beauty brands and organisations signed an open letter to the European Commission asking for an earlier ban of microplastics in cosmetics.

The letter was signed by names including the British Beauty Council, Sustainable Beauty Coalition, Neal's Yard Remedies, Weleda, Beauty Kitchen and Naïf, amongst others.

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