With the aim of consolidating the active participation of European citizens in decision-making processes, and to collect inputs and suggestions, the European Commission can count on various tools. 

One of the most interesting is The Fit for Future platform. It collects spontaneous inputs and suggestions on how to improve existing EU legislation to make it more efficient and effective. A panel of experts from each EU country will review the proposal, then either make a recommendation to the Commission based on the input or write to the applicant to explain why their suggestion cannot be processed.

Recently seven Masters students enrolled at the University of Amsterdam and the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam prepared an input1 to the European Commission on the future Integrated Nutrient Management Action Plan, which was announced to be developed in 2021 as part of the Farm-to-Fork policy.

Their proposal is to elaborate a "Phosphate Directive", which also includes lower cadmium limits among its objectives.

The recommendations are based on a readable 40-page summary on the context, challenges, scenarios and vision.

“Phosphorus sits on the EU’s list of critical materials because it is both a vital component of world food and production systems and a material in short supply (European Commission, 2017). This report directly responds to the anticipation of peak phosphorus in 2030. It is imperative that the EU adopts a sustainable P system in response to phosphorus shortages in addition to environmental problems caused by P runoff (Withers et al., 2015b)”, they affirmed in the conclusions.

The report includes a detailed programme of action in relation to four key areas: policy, technology, economy and society. All linked and interconnected with each other, because only with their mutual support is it possible to create a stronger market and aspire change in the EU's P system.

1 “Input for the proposals by the European Sustainable Phosphorus Platform for EU's INMAP”, by Inge Stammes, Toon Maassen, Fergus Miller Kerins, Giovanni Votano, Daniela Palma Munguia, Zewei Yuan & Mitch Gereadts, 30 June 2020