Smoked meat producers protest EU restrictions
PR dla Zagranicy
Producers of smoked meats from southern Poland held a protest outside parliament on Thursday against the EU's tightening of restrictions on carcinogenic substances in food products.
The protest bt meat producers outside parliament. Photo: PAP/Grzegorz Jakubowski
The protest was accompanied by regional bands, and passers-by were offered the chance to sample sausages, hams and other products.
As of September it will be illegal for EU member states to sell food products that have more than 2 micograms of Benzo[a]pyrene per kilogram.
At present, 5 micrograms of the carcinogenic substance are permissible.
However, following the reduction, about 20 percent of Polish smoked meat products will fail to meet the requirements.
As it stands, about 70 percent of these are from southern Poland (specifically the Malopolska and Podkarpackie regions).
Waldemar Kluska from the Association of Producers of Traditional Smoked Products claims that Minister of Agriculture Marek Sawicki offers different answers at every meeting.
Kluska told Polish Radio that at one point, the minister pledged that he would petition for the EU to make exceptions for those products that are officially listed as traditional regional products.
“This solution is not satisfactory for us,” Kluska stressed, arguing that only 30 products have that status, whereas manufacturers “produce thousands of varieties.” (nh)