Sub-standard imports harming EU egg producers
EU farmers' organisation COPA-COGECA has warned of a flood of imports from non-EU countries, which are not forced to comply with the new EU welfare legislation.
"It is ludricous that the EU has imposed a ban on its own producers, which has cost them more than five billion euros, and not imports," said secretary general Pekka Pesonen.
"Prices have risen as a result of this ban and producers have had to de-populate in the short term to give time to adjust to the new standards and costs, or cease their production. And now the industry is looking to boost imports, which do not have to meet the same standards, in order to fill the gap.
"If the EU Commission imposes such costly legislation on our sector and if these standards are so important to our citizens, then MEPs, EU ministers and the commission should protect the industry. The same standards which are applied in the EU must apply to imports."
The average price of eggs for breaking in the EU has increased by 258% in the year to mid-March, added a COPA-COGECA spokeswoman, reflecting the current production downturn.
Eugene Schaeffer, chairman of the COPA-COGECA working party on eggs said there were other major challenges facing the sector.
"Although EU poultry producers are generally quite competitive and the sector is largely unsupported, they have been suffering recently from high input costs - notably feed costs - which make up 60% of poultry producers' expenses.
"In view of the difficult situation, industry is asking for exceptional measures to help support the market. COPA-COGECA consequently urges the EU to allow time for the market to re-adjust and also to ensure that the same standards which apply in the EU also apply to imports."
Source: Poultry World
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