He was referring to different food manufacturers who were found earlier this year to be selling products with a lower content of primary ingredients or cheaper substitutes in Eastern European markets.
This raised anger among leaders in Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria and Hungary, among others, who talked about “food apartheid”.
Second class consumers
“Slovaks deserve as much fish in their fish sticks as anyone else, and Czechs deserve as much cocoa in their chocolate as anyone else,” Juncker said in his annual State of the Union Speech [#SOTEU]. Cocoa, meat and fish were three of the ingredients which were found to differ across member states.
“In a Union of equals, there can be no second class consumers. I will not accept that in some parts of Europe people are sold food of lower quality than in other countries, despite the packaging and branding being identical.”