Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Twenty-Fourth Report


Memorandum by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food


  1. The Committee, by letter of 23rd June 1999 has requested that the Ministry submit a memorandum on the following point:

      Regulation 2(3) provides that "Any other expression used in these Regulations and in Regulation 2815/98 has, in so far as the context admits, the same meaning as it has in that Regulation". Identify the other expressions and explain, in each case, the need for the qualification in the underlined words.

  2. In response the Ministry submits that interpretation difficulties might occur if the qualification in terms of the underlined words were omitted: for it could then be argued, on a literal basis, that to interpret the Regulations properly the reader would have to consider each word used therein which is also used in Regulation 2815/98 and attempt to discern its meaning from its use in the latter, irrespective of its context in the former. Inclusion of the qualification means that in practice the reader of the Regulations need only refer back to Regulation 2815/98 for the meaning of expressions used, but not specifically defined, therein which appear to be terms of art.

  3. Expressions which are considered to be terms of art include "alphanumeric identification", "approval", "designation of origin", "establishment", "olive oil", "olive residue oil", and "undertaking".

  4. So far as the terms of art themselves are concerned, the qualification seeks to ensure that, if one or more of the relevant expressions bear more than one meaning in the Community instrument, the contextually appropriate meaning is applied to the Regulations.

  5. For example, the expression "designation of origin" appears in regulation 4(1). It is submitted that this expression as used in Article 1 of Regulation 2815/98 means the act of designating origin, and in Article 2 it means the actual origin mark which appears on packaging. In Article 3 the expression is used to mean either the act of designating or the origin mark depending on the context.

  6. The first use of "designation of origin" in paragraph (1) of regulation 4 is intended to bear only the origin mark meaning, whereas the expression as used in sub-paragraph (b) of regulation 4(1) is intended to connote both the act of designating and the origin mark.

30th June 1999

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