The European Commission has released a number of reports which mention food safety in countries wanting to become members of the European Union. The documents cover many areas and look at progress in the past year made by the Western Balkans and Turkey.
In recent years, there have been pesticide residue problems in Turkey. This nation is a major exporter of food products to the EU, and made only limited progress in food safety, veterinary and phytosanitary policies, with recommendations in 2020 only partially taken up.
According to the report, Turkey needs to make further progress to meet EU standards, particularly on pesticide residues. The capacity for official controls was improved but no progress was made on developing the national plan for upgrading agri-food establishments. The EU Commission said significant work was still needed to apply the new rules on registering and approving food establishments.
The number of Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) reports for pesticide residues in fruits and vegetables imported from Turkey into the EU remained unacceptably high, especially in 2020 when new standards on chlorpyrifos and chlorpyrifos-methyl became applicable, according to the assessment.
In the coming year, Turkey should upgrade food establishments to meet EU standards, and submit a national program, make progress in meeting EU pesticide residue maximum limits with a monitoring plan.
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