Dual quality of food products is once again on the agenda of the European Parliament

2020. 01. 23.

Press Release by MEP Edina Tóth

Today, the European Commission presented the results of a European testing campaign of food products in the European Parliament’s internal market committee. The findings showed that some products are identically or similarly branded while having a different composition. Fidesz MEP Edina Tóth was pleased to note that there was no evidence of an East-West division regarding the quality of food products. She found it concerning though that according to the findings, a significant proportion of the same or similar brand products investigated had different compositions.

MEP Tóth noted that for several years now, the European Commission has cautiously examined the issue of dual quality and composition between Eastern and Western European countries. “The Hungarian government and the Fidesz-KDNP delegation to the EP have repeatedly spoken out against the duality caused by the product diversity of the global food companies”, reminded the EPP Group politician.

The European Commission has often contradicted itself on this matter, and unfortunately, as in this case, that often happens because of the result of inadequate investigations, mainly due to the non-representative nature of those.

“There should be no double standards on the European single market”, emphasized the Fidesz MEP responsible for consumer protection. “The powers of national consumer protection authorities shall be strengthened. Member States should be provided by tools that can put an end to this practice and that can ensure consumers to have real information about products’ ingredients”, closed her intervention MEP Edina Tóth.

Background: National authorities were invited to collect data on selected products to be analysed in the EU-wide testing campaign. This selection of products to be examined was mainly based on the outcome of previous national surveys, and as such, included the products of highest concern for the public in various Member States. The Joint Research Centre developed the methodology with the support of other European Commission services and representatives of stakeholders of the food chain. This included each Member States’ authorities and associations representing the food and retail industry, as well as consumer organisations.