“We must protect people from food discrimination. It is unacceptable for certain multinational companies and food processing companies to marketing lower quality products in Central and Eastern Europe”, Minister of Agriculture Sándor Fazekas said on Kossuth Radio on Wednesday morning.

“Tomorrow in Warsaw, the extraordinary V4 summit will be dealing with the issue of dual or weaker quality foods being marketed in Central and Eastern Europe. In view of their mutual interests, the representatives of the four Visegrád Group countries will be calling on the European Commission to create a legal framework to enable companies to be made accountable for this reduction in quality”, the Minister said.

A legal environment must be established in which the public interest is enforced, because the right to healthy foods is a fundamental right, he explained. Mr. Fazekas said it was outrageous that companies are trying to market foods that are sometimes of inferior quality or produced using different ingredients, primarily in our region. The Minister said this was why he had ordered the testing of similar foods available in different countries on several occasions. Most recently, last week the National Food Chain Safety Office (NFCSO) launched a new investigation into one hundred foods.

“People don’t want the application of double standards; they expect to be able to purchase the same products at the same level of quality here at home, as they can abroad”, the Minster said. We would like to draw attention to the fact that the Hungarian food industry is more than capable of producing western quality products, and we encourage everyone to buy healthy, tasty and high quality Hungarian products”, the Minister of Agriculture added.

During the interview, Mr. Fazekas also mentioned that he is expecting to receive tens of thousands of opinions and suggestions within the framework of the internet consultation on the European Union’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), which was launched a few weeks ago. The European Commission is “circling around farmers’ money” and has proposed that a proportion of agricultural funding should be reshuffled to cover expenses relating to the migration crisis, which is unacceptable.

(Ministry of Agriculture Press Office)