Help Print this page 

Summaries of EU Legislation

Title and reference

Summaries of EU legislation: direct access to the main summaries page.

This summary is archived.
Languages and formats available
HTML html ES html DE html EN html FR
Multilingual display
Miscellaneous information
  • Archived: true


The common organisation of the market in eggs facilitates the marketing of eggs and lays down rules for trade with third countries. It will remain in force until 30 June 2008.


Regulation (EEC) No 2771/75 of the Council of 29 October 1975 on the common organisation of the market in eggs [See amending acts].


The common organisation of the market in eggs helps stabilise the agricultural markets and guarantee a fair standard of living for the egg-farming community. It provides initiatives allowing the sector to develop properly and to engage in trade with non-EU countries.

From 1 July 2008, this common organisation of the market will be included in the common organisation of agricultural markets.


The common organisation of the market in eggs covers poultry eggs (including free-range, in‑shell, fresh, preserved or cooked) and other birds’ eggs (including eggs which have undergone certain cooking or preservation methods, or have been sweetened).

Marketing measures

To encourage action by trade and joint trade organisations, Community measures may be taken to improve product quality and product use, to promote better organisation of production and marketing and to facilitate the recording of market price trends.

The marketing standards relate in particular to grading by quality and weight, packaging, storage, transport, presentation and marking.

Trade with third countries

Imports and exports may be subject to presentation of an import or export licence issued by the Member States to anyone who applies for one.

The rates of duty set out in the Common Customs Tariff are usually applied to products in the egg sector. However, an additional import duty may be levied if the conditions set out in Article 5 of the Agreement on Agriculture (pdf), concluded as part of the Uruguay Round of trade negotiations, have been fulfilled. The World Trade Organisation also sets the trigger prices below which an additional import duty may be levied.

Tariff quotas are allocated on a non-discriminatory basis, e.g. by applying the “first come, first served” principle, the so-called “simultaneous examination” method, or the “traditional/new arrivals” method.

In the event of price rises on the Community market, the Council, acting on a proposal from the Commission and after consultation with the European Parliament, may take appropriate measures.

Export refunds may be granted to cover the difference between world market prices for the products and Community prices. The quantities granted these refunds are determined by a non-discriminatory method based on the nature of the product, the situation on the market, and the needs of the operators concerned. Before the export refunds are paid, those applying for them must prove that the products in question are of Community origin and have been exported from the Community.

In certain circumstances, the use of inward processing arrangements may be prohibited.

Charges with equivalent effect to customs duty and quantitative restrictions or equivalent measures are prohibited in trade with third countries.

Safeguard measures may be adopted if the Community market is threatened with disturbance as a result of imports or exports.

The Treaty rules on State aid apply to the egg sector. However, exceptional support measures for the market may be taken at the request of a Member State to prevent the spread of animal diseases or to boost consumer confidence after a public health crisis. In cases such as these, the Commission part-finances 50% of the expenditure borne by the Member State in managing the crisis.

The Member States and the Commission are to notify one another of the information necessary for implementing the Regulation. The Commission is to be assisted by a Management Committee for Poultrymeat and Eggs (FR) composed of the representatives of Member States and chaired by a representative of the Commission.


The first common organisation of the market in eggs was established by Regulation (EEC) No 21 in 1962. The current Regulation, which reformed the first system, has been in place since 1975 but this has been amended several times since it came into force and, as from 1 July 2008, will be incorporated into the single common market organisation.



Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EEC) No 2771/75



OJ L 282, 1.11.1975

Amending act(s)

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EEC) No 368/76



OJ L 45, 21.2.1976

Regulation (EEC) No 3643/81



OJ L 364, 19.12.1981

Regulation (EEC) No 1475/86



OJ L 133, 21.5.1986

Regulation (EEC) No 4000/87



OJ L 377, 31.12.1987

Regulation (EEC) No 3207/88



OJ L 286, 20.10.1988

Regulation (EEC) No 1235/89



OJ L 128, 11.5.1989

Regulation (EEC) No 1574/93



OJ L 152, 24.6.1993

Regulation (EC) No 3290/94



OJ L 349, 31.12.1994

Regulation (EC) No 2916/95



OJ L 305, 19.12.1995

Regulation (EC) No 1516/96



OJ L 189, 30.7.1996

Regulation (EC) No 493/2002



OJ L 77, 20.3.2002

Acts relating to the accession of the Czech Republic, Republic of Estonia, Republic of Cyprus, Republic of Latvia, Republic of Lithuania, Republic of Hungary, Republic of Malta, Republic of Poland, Republic of Slovenia and the Slovak Republic to the EU.



OJ L 236, 23.9.2003

Regulation (EC) No 806/2003



OJ L 122, 16.5.2003

Regulation (EC) No 1913/2005



OJ L 307, 25.11.2005

Regulation (EC) No 679/2006



OJ L 119, 4.5.2006

Successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EEC) No 2771/75 have been incorporated into the basic text. This consolidated version (pdf) is intended purely as a documentation tool.


Regulation (EEC) No 2782/75 [Official Journal L 282 of 1.11.1975]. Council Regulation (EEC) No 2782/75 of 29 October 1975 on the production and marketing of eggs for hatching and of farmyard poultry chicks.

See consolidated version (pdf).

Regulation (EEC) No 1907/90 [Official Journal L 173 of 6.7.1990]. Council Regulation (EEC) No 1907/90 of 26 June 1990 on certain marketing standards for eggs.

See consolidated version (pdf).

Regulation (EC) No 1028/2006 [Official Journal L 186 of 7.7.2006].


Regulation (EC) No 596/2004 [Official Journal L 94, 31.3.2004]. Commission Regulation (EC) No 596/2004 of 30 March 2004 laying down detailed rules for implementing the system of export licences in the egg sector.

See consolidated version (pdf).

Regulation (EC) No 839/2007 [Official Journal L 186, 18.7.2007]. Commission Regulation (EC) No 839/2007 of 17 July 2007 fixing the export refunds on eggs.

Regulation (EC) No 841/2007 [Official Journal L 186, 18.7.2007]. Commission Regulation (EC) No 841/2007 of 17 July 2007 fixing the rates of the refunds applicable to eggs and egg yolks exported in the form of goods not covered by Annex I to the Treaty.


Regulation (EC) No 1484/95 [Official Journal L 145, 29.6.1995]. Commission Regulation (EC) No 1484/95 of 28 June 1995 laying down detailed rules for implementing the system of additional import duties and fixing additional import duties in the poultrymeat and egg sectors and for egg albumin, and repealing Regulation No 163/67/EEC.

See consolidated version (pdf).

Regulation (EC) No 539/2007 [Official Journal L 128, 16.5.2007]. Commission Regulation (EC) No 539/2007 of 15 May 2007 opening and providing for the administration of tariff quotas in the egg sector and for egg albumin.

See also

For further information, please refer to the legislation on the common organisation of the market in eggs and poultry and to the relevant pages on the Directorate-General for Agriculture’s website.

Last updated: 11.03.2008