EU's East still struggling with "food double standards"

Bulgarian authorities have urged the EU to eliminate “double standards” used by food companies.

Source: Tanjug

Officials in ex-communist Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary and Bulgaria say it is unethical for food items sold under the same brand to be inferior in quality in “new” EU member states in the East compared with “old” member states in the west, Reuters is reporting.

However, the practice is legal in the EU as long as food ingredients are clearly listed, the agency said.

“Double standards in food products in the European Union have left 100 million people feeling like aborigines. I would be very ashamed if I was in place of these chains and manufacturers. Does it not seem a shame? Who is this clever guy in Europe who decided a Bulgarian baby prefers palm oil to milk?,” Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov told a conference on consumer law and consumer protection in Sofia.

Borissov, whose country currently holds EU presidency, said he would ensure food from Bulgarian supermarkets was served to EU leaders at the EU-Western Balkans summit in Sofia on May 17.

“EU unity means one standard,” he said.

EU Justice, Consumer Protection and Gender Equality Commissioner Vera Jourova said the European Commission had issued a legal opinion that such quality differences were unfair and the problem “could be resolved very soon."


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