According to a survey on product quality in Croatia, almost 83 percent of Croatian citizens believe that products intended for eastern European markets are of poorer quality than those sold in shops in western EU member countries.
Furthermore, more than 70 percent of Croatian citizens believe that in the eyes of large European corporations in Western Europe, they are still the second-class citizens. In order to examine this situation, the Croatian MEP Biljana Borzan and the Croatian Food Agency will carry out a comparative analysis and testing of 27 seemingly identical products sold in Croatian and German supermarkets.
The project has three phases. The first phase has already defined the list of 22 food products and five cleaning and personal hygiene products such as Coca Cola, Pepsi, Nestea ice tea, Heineken beer, Rio Mare tuna, pasta Barilla, Ariel laundry detergent, Silan laundry softener, Domestos household cleaning products as well as Nivea and Colgate products. In addition, these products will be sampled in Germany and Croatia for further chemical analysis in order to determine their quality.
The second phase includes the selection of adequate quality parameters such as basic raw materials, taste, smell, share of sweeteners etc. The third phase refers to data processing that will help compile a report.
‘’Sampling and part of the analysis will be conducted by the Andrija Stampar Teaching Institute in Zagreb, because this institute is recognized as the leading institute in Croatia and in the region’’, said Borzan.
Zvonimir Sostar, the director of the Andrija Stampar Teaching Institute emphasized, ‘’The safety and high quality of food is our priority, thus we do not want double standards when it comes to the quality of seemingly identical products in Croatia and countries of Western Europe. All the research will be carried out professionally, and the results will be transparently presented to the public’’.