Verifying plant health
The SOC’s government-mandated tasks are not limited to verifying and monitoring technical compliance in the context of certification. SOC is also charged with carrying out inspections focused on plant health. The goal is to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of surveillance efforts targeting harmful organisms in seeds and planting materials.
SOC exercises this authority over seeds and planting materials that fall into the species categories that the service already oversees in the context of certification. More specifically, such monitoring occurs in the following situations:
- conducting inspections and issuing EU plant passports;
- conducting inspections so that the French Regional Directorate for Food, Agriculture, and Forestry/Regional Food Department (DRAAF/SRAL) can issue phytosanitary certificates for export or intra-EU phytosanitary communication documents (IPCD).
SOC carries out audits of companies (i.e., focused on administrative structure and documentation) and field inspections or seed/planting material lots controls, which may involve taking samples and conducting laboratory analyses.