Nearly 80 percent of Czechs consider the dual quality of food in European stores a problem. A study carried out by the KPMG agency suggests that roughly every seventh Czech consumer prefers to buy certain products abroad and nearly one third of them refrain from buying certain products due to the dual quality issue.
Consumer prices rose on average by 2.8 percent last year, the highest annual increase since 2012, according to data released by the Czech Statistics Agency on Monday. The most influential factor on the rise of inflation was the growth in housing prices, the head of the agency’s Consumer Prices Statistics Unit Pavla Šedivá told news site iHNed.cz. Another factor was the rise in food prices, and rents. Meanwhile, clothing and shoe prices had a downward trend.
Czech MPs have approved the government draft amendment to the Food and
Consumer Protection acts to impose steep fines on retailers selling “dual
quality” food and other products.
If signed into law, retailers who sell inferior quality products that appear to be the same as superior ones sold elsewhere in the EU could be fined up to 50 million crowns.
The Czech Republic has long pushed for the EU to ban “dual quality” product sales, arguing that the Single Market should not have de facto double standards.
Currently, for example, the same brand of frozen fish fingers sold in Germany may have 20 percent more actual fish (i.e. fewer fillers, such as breadcrumbs) than the version sold here.
Under EU law, if the packing accurately lists the ingredients or contents the practice is legal.
Over 330 tons of food and 52 tons of dry goods were donated to Czech charities and NGOs in the National Food Collection held this weekend. That is the best result since the tradition was launched seven years ago. The goods will be distributed among the country’s close to 24,000 homeless people and the 1.5 million living on the poverty line.
Creamy soup from leftover mashed potatoes or vinegar made from fruit and vegetable scraps - these are just some of the many recipes included in a new cook book by the Initiative Zachraň Jídlo or Save Food. Its aim is to teach Czech consumers to reduce household waste by providing tips and recipes using food scraps, leftovers and surplus seasonal ingredients.
There has been a significant rise in Fairtrade product sales in the Czech
Republic. The most significant increase was registered in cocoa beans
sales, which grew by 155 percent compared to last year’s numbers, Hana
Malíková, from the NGO Fairtrade Czech Republic and Slovakia, told
journalists at a press conference on Wednesday.
Fairtrade cotton sales also faired particularly well, increasing by 317 percent. Meanwhile, coffee and tea sales rose by 37 and 24 percent respectively.
Fair trade is an institutional arrangement designed to help producers in developing countries achieve better trading conditions. According to a recent survey, 52 percent of Czechs recognise the Fairtrade logo and nearly a fifth of shoppers bought a product with this label in the last quarter-year.
The vast majority of Czech consumers, some 97 percent, want tougher quality parameters on foodstuffs sold in the country, according to a June survey whose results were made public by the Czech Consumer Association on Tuesday. More than nine out of ten respondents also said that they wouldn’t mind if the tougher rules resulted in restrictions on cheap food imports.
The presence of so-called dual quality food in European stores was confirmed this week, when the results of a European Commission study showed that the labelling on 31 percent of analysed products was either fully or partly misleading. What is more, it seems dual quality is not just a problem in Central and Eastern Europe, but across the whole union.
The Czech government is poised to amend the Food and Consumer Protection acts so as to ban the practice of “dual quality” sales of food and other products. If signed into law, retailers would be banned from selling inferior quality products that appear to be the same as superior ones sold elsewhere in the EU.