Source: Agroklub | Monday, 25.01.2021.| 11:06
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Czech Republic Planning to Have at Least 55% Domestic Products in Stores

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Illustration (Photo: hxdyl/shutterstock.com)
The Czech Republic is on its way to introduce a protectionist food law despite warnings that this could be in violation of the EU’s free movement of goods, EurActiv reports.

The lower house of Czech parliament passed an amendment to the food law on Wednesday (20 January) under which stores larger than 400 square meters will be required to sell a mandatory minimum share of food products made in the Czech Republic, starting in 2022. The quota is to be 55% next year, with the aim to gradually grow this to 73% in 2028.

Penalties are also planned and they go up to 50 million korunas, which is close to 2 million euros. The quotas should pertain to up to 15,000 kinds of food products, including meat and vegetables.

The aim is to gain self-sufficiency in foodstuff production and to support local farmers. The law now needs to be signed by the Senate and then by Czech President Milos Zeman.

Food nationalism?

Before the vote, agriculture minister Miroslav Toman called on MPs to be “a little bit nationalistic” when it comes to Czech foodstuffs.

Although the European Commission was reluctant to comment at this early stage, a spokesperson told EurActiv the following

– Free movement of goods and services in the internal market is our strongest asset in ensuring supplies across the EU, and is also our best tool to ensure recovery for all.

He added that “local restrictions of whatever type are counterproductive”.
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