On 30 April 2018, under the patronage of the Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and as part of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU, an international high-level forum dedicated to the double standard of foodstuffs within the EU will be held.
The aim of the forum is to put the issue about the double standard on foodstuffs within the EU on the agenda. Various foods of the same brand with different ingredients are available within EU Member States. This practice is unacceptable as high quality food is a priority for every EU consumer and citizen, regardless of which EU country they live in.
The event is a natural continuation of the ongoing EU-wide discussion in the context of the positions already expressed by the Visegrad Group and by the European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker in September 2017, when he said that “in a Union of equals, there can be no second class consumers”.
The purpose of the meeting in Sofia is to discuss the possibility of solving the above problem by adopting new EU legislation or by making changes to the existing EU directives that will prohibit the distribution of food under the same brand with different ingredients.
The forum will also table the issue of the creation of a single European body tasked with monitoring the existence of double food standard.
The organiser of the event is Ms Maya Manolova, the Ombudsman of the Republic of Bulgaria, in partnership with the Ministry of Economy, Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, Ministry of Health, the Commission for Consumer Protection and the Bulgarian Food Safety Agency.
The summit will be attended by Ms Věra Jourová, the Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, Ms Mariya Gabriel, the Commissioner for Digital Economy and Digital Society, ministers of economy, agriculture and health of the EU Member States, as well as heads of related national consumer and food safety authorities, MEPs, MPs, ambassadors and others.
The participation of Mr Vytenis Andriukaitis, the Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, as well as several Prime Ministers of the EU Member States are to be confirmed.
The event is open for media.