20:07 05.04.2024

Poland fines some companies for importing Ukrainian food, falsifying data on their quality, origin

2 min read

Poland's Agricultural and Food Quality Inspection fined PLN 1.5 million (about $380,000) a company that imported industrial rapeseed and feed wheat into the Polish market and sold them to a number of local enterprises as agricultural food products, according to the inspection's website.

The inspectorate checked 3,882 tonnes of rapeseed and revealed facts of a change in the declared purpose from industrial to consumer use and the declared country of origin from Ukraine to Poland.

A similar decision was made against a company that was fined for the supply of 7,679 tonnes of wheat, in which a discrepancy between the purpose of the product and its country of origin was also revealed.

"Agricultural products intended for industrial purposes are generally not produced, stored or transported in accordance with the safety standards required for food products. They are price competitive because they are not subject to food legislation provisions, and enterprises those selling them do not bear the costs associated with compliance with higher safety standards," the inspectorate said.

The inspectorate, based on an analysis of the seized documentation, established that the fined company brought to the market more than 11,500 tonnes of counterfeit rapeseed and wheat imported from Ukraine and resold the goods to six contractors from the Pomeranian and Lublin voivodeships.

"Regardless of the administrative decision made, the case is also the subject of criminal proceedings under the supervision of the Rzeszow Regional Prosecutor's Office," the inspectorate said.

The fine issued by the Agricultural and Food Quality Inspection in Lublin is not an isolated case, the inspection said. Over the past few months, six more companies have been fined for similar violations in the supply of wheat, barley, poultry meat and for obstructing inspectors from inspecting cargo from Ukraine.

According to information from Chief Inspector of Agricultural and Food Quality Przemysław Rzodkiewicz, in 2023, inspectors checked more than 82,000 batches of goods.

"To intensify efforts to ensure the proper quality and positive image of food in Poland, we have created a team at the Agricultural and Food Quality Inspection to combat food fraud and will soon, together with numerous partners, launch a campaign to counter misinformation about this category of products," he said.