EU Food Safety flags Moroccan peppers amid farmer tensions

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The European Union's Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) has issued another alert regarding a Moroccan produce shipment destined for Europe. This time, RASFF warns of the alleged detection of a health risk in sweet peppers from Morocco.

The European Union body claims that pesticides, chlorpyrifos and fenazaquin, considered harmful to health, have been detected in the Moroccan shipment, according to Spanish media reports. RASFF classified the alert as «elevated risk» but did not specify the dangers or symptoms associated with these pesticides.

However, health authorities reported on their website that the product was rejected at the Moroccan border and did not reach the Spanish market.

This is not the first time RASFF has warned about the presence of pesticides in Moroccan produce destined for the European market. In May, a similar alert was issued regarding a Moroccan shipment.

These alerts emerge amid tensions between European farmers and Moroccan produce importers. European farmers accuse Moroccan imports of unfair competition and non-compliance with European health standards. Some farmers have even resorted to blocking and destroying Moroccan shipments.

Denying these allegations, the Secretary General of the Moroccan Confederation of Agriculture (COMADER), Youssef Alaoui, stated in early June that Moroccan produce complies with European health standards. «We, as farmers, do not accept that standardized European products with the Morocco label should be blocked», he argued.

COMADER previously responded to European farmers protesting the presence of Moroccan produce in a press release, stating that it reserves «the right to defend the legitimate interests of Moroccan exporters».

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