Lower Quality Groceries for the East
Why are many Czechs travelling all way to Germany for grocery shopping? In the recent BBC News report, a major problem of eastern European countries was brought up – food quality big food producers provide in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, and Hungary. Most of the products are apparently the same; or at least the packaging and the labels are.
During an on-spot interview in a supermarket in Altenberg, Czech shopper Petr Zedinek claimed that food in Germany is of higher quality and the prize is significantly lower while pointing at a can of tuna and sausages. It’s not only Petr’s family that visit Germany for shopping regularly, the parking lot was mostly occupied by cars with Czech licence plates.
Czechs have discovered that the same products from European wholesalers are of lower quality in the Czech Republic. The same applies to other countries in Central and Eastern Europe. Czech Agriculture Minister Marian Jurečka presented more cases of inferior food products in the Czech market compared to the same products in Germany. 24 product samples were formally examined in the labs of University of Chemistry and Technology in Prague; the results proved significant differences in quality and composition.
Jurečka thinks that food quality in the EU should be uniform, but with “some products, we are in fact Europe’s garbage can,” he explicitly said to Reuters. Jurečka and his counterparts from Slovakia and Hungary intend to bring the matter to the European Commission after collecting enough data and the issue has become one of the priorities for Visegrad group, a political platform of Central European countries.
EU law allows food quality differences for similarly named products as long as their packaging identifies all used ingredients.
Title Picture: Pixabay.com