Food Fraud Report passage welcome" - MEP Anderson
Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson has welcomed the passing of the Food Fraud Report at the EU Parliament for which she was Shadow Rapporteur.
Commenting on the importance of the report Martina Anderson said:
"I voted in favour of this Report dealing with the issue of food fraud. After the shocking case of the horse meat scandal last year it has become clear that with rising food prices and a lack of resources for food safety inspectors it has become all too temptingly profitable for fraudsters to exploit the weaknesses in the inspection processes.
"Action needs to be taken so that this criminal minority do not tarnish the excellent reputations of the majority of food producers. I look forward to the proposals in this Report becoming compulsory.
"Whilst the level of sanctions and penalties is the competency of Member States, I was glad the Parliament supported the view that they should be at least double that of the cost of the profits. I am also glad that the Parliament supported mandatory labeling of ingredients in frozen food such as Lasagna. We also stated that there needed to be more food inspection and they should be unannounced which would require more resources for Food & Veterinary Offices.
"Traceability is key - every stage of the food chain from producers to point of purchase should be able to stand over the provenance and quality of food. The focus on a race to the bottom on prices must be avoided in the interest of food safety. Consumers should be able to trust what it says on the labels.
"And in line with the Good Friday Agreement, producers in the North of Ireland should be allowed to continue to label their produce as Irish if they so wish."