Effort to deal with concerns over food

Talks were held yesterday between the government and representatives of businesses in the food sector in an effort to complete the withdrawal of sunflower oil from the market and to agree a price freeze on cooking oils as well as other basic foodstuffs. Development Minister Christos Folias met with officials from the Federation of Hellenic Food Industries (SEVT) and National Confederation of Hellenic Commerce (ESEE) to discuss a range of issues that have arisen in the wake of contaminated sunflower oil from Ukraine surfacing in Greece, as well as other European countries. Authorities have asked for all sunflower oil to be removed from stores but reports over the weekend suggested that the item is still widely available in Greece. Folias asked yesterday for a list of products containing sunflower oil, such as mayonnaise and tinned fish, to be drawn up by the food industry so consumers can be better informed about the products they should avoid. The imported sunflower oil was found to contain mineral oil, which could be harmful, particularly to children and pregnant women. The government has ordered a price freeze on olive oil and other food oils in a bid to prevent profiteering and sources suggested that Folias yesterday discussed the possibility of the prices of other staple goods being fixed for the next few months to stave off further hikes.