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Why I think olive oil jug ban puts unnecessary burden on businesses

A European Commission proposal to ban reusable olive oil dishes and bottles in restaurants has been branded "plain daft".


Catherine Bearder, an MEP for the South East, has signed a written question calling on the commission to justify the ban.

She said: "Just when the focus should be on promoting jobs and growth, we get a decision which beggars belief.

"Outlawing reusable bottles puts an unnecessary burden on restaurants and could drive up prices for customers. It's just plain daft.

From January olive oil at restaurant tables must be in pre-packaged factory bottles with a tamper-proof dispensing nozzle.

But Catherine added: "We have been told the aim is protect customers from low-quality oils, but what is this really about?

"It appears to be more a case of extending an olive branch to producers in southern Europe. This blanket ban is a huge overreaction.

"Does a restaurant present the customer with the bag of flour used to make its bread?"

An amendment to EU Marketing Standards for olive oil (Commission Regulation 29/2012) will require bottles in the catering sector to be non refillable and non re-sealable.

DEFRA said the UK abstained from the vote because it agreed with many of the new labelling provisions, but not the olive oil measure.

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