News 07.04.2020

Food safety and consumer protection in Corona crisis

  • Transparency and food safety

foodwatch is calling on the European Commission to ensure that food safety and consumer protection are not compromised during the Corona crisis. This crisis must not be used to lower food safety standards in the EU – on the contrary this is the time to tighten implementation of EU food law.

It is more important than ever that EU citizens have trust that the EU is protecting their health and safety. However, the Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/466 of 30 March 2020 on temporary measures to contain risks to human, animal and plant health and animal welfare during certain serious disruptions of Member States’ control systems due to coronavirus disease (COVID-19) by the European Commission seems to be going in the opposite direction. The measures set out in the text reduce safety checks and open the door to even allowing incorrect product labelling in France.

The Corona pandemic in no way justifies any attempts by the food industry to weaken the legal requirements for food safety and consumer protection. The only way we can learn and move on from this crisis is to strengthen surveillance in Europe, to network it more intelligently and to make it fully transparent to the public. This is not the time for the quality or quantity of food inspections to be watered down.

foodwatch has written to Commissioner Kyriakides, the European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, to express our deep concern about the publication of this Regulation (EU) 2020/466.