LYMEC, the European Liberal Youth, announce our bewilderment at yet another bizarre decision made by the European Commission. It has been announced that from 1 January 2014, all olive oil used by the public in restaurants must be contained in pre-packaged bottles. This means that the use of refillable glass jugs and dipping bowls Europeans have come to know and love will be effectively outlawed.
As surreal as this bureaucratic decision is, it will have genuine economic consequences on restaurants and retailers across Europe. LYMEC believes that is an example of the continuing pursuit of regulation, under the shadow of the Common Agricultural Policy, which not only restricts freedom of the individual, but has a damaging effect on cultural identity. What is worse is that it not democratically accountable politicians making these harmful decisions but bureaucrats with no appreciation of the wishes, needs and lifestyle of the European citizen. This measure benefits large industries who will produce these bottles and the expense of smaller businesses and artisans, and further damages the already beleaguered reputation of the EU.
LYMEC calls upon ALDE and the whole of the Parliament and Commission to have the right priorities when dealing with food regulation, and to consider the effects of making such ridiculous decisions.