Worst food fraud offenders to pay big fines from next year

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Companies guilty of the biggest violations on the rules regarding food safety, will soon have to pay massive fines. From June 1st next year, the worst food fraud offenders will have to pay 10 percent of their annual turnover, instead of the current maximum fine of 20 thousand euros.

This amendment to the Animal Act, which oversees the production of food, was proposed by State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs, AD reports. The Council of State is currently considering the amendment.

According to State Secretary, the current maximum fine of 20 thousand euros is largely ignored by wrong doers. "It is simply factored in by the fraudulent food producers", he said to the newspaper. "We saw in the horse meat scandal that this amount does not frighten them. We are going to change that. If they have to pay 10 percent of their annual turnover - no maximum - they will really feel it."

The maximum fines in the Commodities Act, which deals with products already in stores, were already increased from 4,500 euros to 810 thousand euros in April.

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