Farm minister orders Nébih to probe identically branded products

Food

In another turn in the “lower-quality” products scandal, Hungary’s Minister of Agriculture Sándor Fazekas was reported to have ordered Hungarian food safety authority Nébih to conduct an inspection comparing the quality of identically branded products available at domestic and foreign retail stores to reveal if there are any differences, according to reports today.

The inspection will involve 100 products from all sectors of the food industry and include a comparison of ingredients and sensory impressions, Róbert Zsigó, state secretary for supermarket oversight at the Ministry of Agriculture, said today, according to Hungarian news agency MTI. The first results of the inspection could be made public by the middle of March, Zsigó added.

The development comes shortly after a report by the National Food Chain Safety Office (Nébih), published in government-friendly daily Magyar Idők, suggesting that multinationals offer “lower-quality” products in Hungary. Following the report, Cabinet Chief János Lázár urged the government to launch a probe of identically branded products in Hungary and Austria, while a trade association rejected the report as “subjective.”

Hungary’s National Association of Food Processors (ÉFOSZ) announced it will contact Nébih, after it only learned about a food quality probe by the latter through the media, according to a press statement sent to the Budapest Business Journal on Friday.

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