Table of Contents:


Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Rice


These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Agriculture > Markets for agricultural products


The common organisation of the market in rice stabilises prices and ensures a fair level of income for farmers, while establishing a system of prices and arrangements for trade with third countries. It remains in force until 31 August 2008.

Document or Iniciative

Council Regulation (EC) No 1785/2003 of 29 September 2003 on the common organisation of the market in rice [See amending acts]


As of 1 September 2008, products falling within the scope of this Regulation are governed by the common organisation of agricultural markets.

This Regulation concerns the common organisation of the market in rice, which was previously governed by Regulation (EC) No 3072/95.

This common organisation of the market provides for intervention on the internal market, including the fixing of an intervention price, and certain support measures for European products when they are traded on international markets. In addition, it is heavily influenced by certain international agreements concluded under the GATT.


The common organisation of the market in rice covers:

  • rice in the husk (paddy or rough);
  • husked (brown) rice;
  • semi-milled or wholly milled rice;
  • broken rice;
  • rice flour;
  • groats and meal of rice;
  • pellets of rice;
  • flaked rice;
  • grains of rice;
  • rice starch.

The marketing year runs annually from 1 September to 31 August.

Direct payments and specific aid to farmers can be paid under the 2003 agricultural reform, which introduced the principle of a single farm payment.

Internal market

The intervention price per tonne of paddy rice (rice which has retained its husk after threshing) is 150. Between 1 April and 31 July of each year, the intervention agencies can buy in up to 75 000 tonnes of rice. If the quality of the paddy rice offered for intervention is different from the standard quality for which the intervention price has been fixed, price increases or reductions are applied. The intervention agencies can then offer the stored rice either for sale on the Community market or for export to third countries.

Member States provide the European Commission with information on output, stocks and prices of rice based on the declarations made by producers and processors operating on their territory.

Trade with third countries

Imports and exports are subject to the issue by Member States of an import or export licence, which is valid throughout the Community.

Import duties vary according to the product as follows:

  • for husked rice, the Commission has fixed duties which vary according to the quantity imported;
  • for Basmati rice, no import duty is applied;
  • for semi-milled or wholly milled rice, the Commission has fixed duties which vary according to the quantity imported;
  • for broken rice, the import duty is 65 per tonne;
  • for all other products, the Common Customs Tariff applies.

Additional duties may be applied in certain circumstances.

Tariff quotas are opened and managed by the Commission according to a method based on the chronological order in which applications were submitted (first come, first served), a method of distribution in proportion to the quantities requested when the applications were submitted (simultaneous examination), a method based on taking traditional trade patterns into account or other non-discriminatory methods.

To enable the products referred to in this Regulation to be exported, an export refund may be granted to cover the difference between the prices of these products on the Community market and on the world market. The Regulation contains the principles governing the granting of export refunds.

Where the smooth operation of the market organisation in rice so requires, the Council may prohibit the use of inward or outward processing arrangements.

Charges having an effect equivalent to customs duty and quantitative restrictions on imports or equivalent measures are prohibited in trade with third countries. However, safeguard measures may be adopted if the market is threatened with disturbance as a result of imports or exports.

Other provisions

Save where the Regulation contains arrangements to the contrary, the Treaty rules on State aid apply to the rice sector.

The Member States and the Commission notify one another of the information necessary for implementing the Regulation. In implementing the Regulation the Commission is assisted by the Management Committee for Cereals (FR) made up of representatives of the Member States and chaired by a representative of the Commission.


The first common organisation of the market in rice dates from 1964, with Regulation No 16/64/EEC. Since entering into force it has been reformed on several occasions, in 1967, 1976 and 1995.

The reform of the common organisation of the market in cereals introduced by this Regulation in 2003 was aimed at addressing the imbalances on the European rice market and reducing the intervention price. This reduction also falls within the scope of the major agricultural reform of 2003, which introduced specific aid for rice producers.


Act Entry into force – Date of expiry Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Regulation (EC) No 1785/2003 28.10.2003 OJ L 270, 21.10.2003
Amending act(s) Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Regulation (EC) No 247/2006 15.2.2006 OJ L 42, 14.02.2006
Regulation (EC) No 797/2006 3.6.2006 OJ L 144, 31.05.2006

Successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EC) No 1785/2003 have been incorporated into the basic text. This consolidated version (PDF ) is for reference purposes only.

Related Acts

Detailed implementing rules

Commission Regulation (EC) No 489/2005 of 29 March 2005 laying down detailed rules for implementing Council Regulation (EC) No 1785/2003 as regards determining the intervention centres and the taking over of paddy rice by the intervention agencies [Official Journal L 81 of 30.03.2005].

Trade with less developed countries

Commission Regulation (EC) No 964/2007 of 14 August 2007 laying down detailed rules for the opening and administration of the tariff quotas for rice originating in the least developed countries for the marketing years 2007/2008 and 2008/2009 [Official Journal L 213 of 15.8.2007].

Basmati rice

Commission Regulation (EC) No 972/2006 of 29 June 2006 laying down special rules for imports of Basmati rice and a transitional control system for determining their origin [Official Journal L 176 of 30.06.2006].

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