Not long after November's demonstration, EFSA took the initiative to organise a meeting in Brussels with the signatory organisations and the European Commission, in order to discuss the demands. This presented an interesting development in our dialogue with the EU institutions, which to date had seen then generally dismissing the very idea that there could be a problem in the EU food safety system. The meeting took place on 30 January.
However, while an unexpected dialogue may have been opened, problems with our food system and the way EFSA regulates it have far from disappeared:
The programme focuses on the sugar industry lobby, and the EFSA nutrition panel. This panel wrote in an opinion that there is no proven link between sugar and obesity. Something also claimed by the sugar industry.
Once again, the issue of food labelling is on the table in the European Parliament, and is at the core of heated debate. EU Food Policy (issue 56 of 15 April 2011), reports that MEPs are furious about the food industry's lobbying attempts. Breaking all etiquette rules, leaflets were placed on MEPs desks urging them to vote agains certain amendments to the Food Information proposal. MEPs across the political spectrum have denounced the aggressive industry lobbying. The Environment Committee of the European Parliament is due to vote on the issue on Tuesday 19 April.