On Monday, the Express ran the headline 'Barmy EU 'colder fridges' order will cost us £100m'. The story, by Cyril Dixon, began:
Britain faces a £100million bill because a bizarre new EU regulation will order supermarkets to turn down the temperature on their refrigerators.
Eurocrats are demanding that stores’ cold storage areas are chilled by a further three degrees to “improve” food safety.
An 'order'. A 'new regulation'. A 'demand'.
Or maybe not, says Mark English:
Contrary to claims in your article, “Barmy EU ‘colder fridges’ order will cost us £100m”, 12 December 2011, there are no new EU regulations ordering supermarkets to turn down fridge temperatures. The facts are less chilling.
EU member states have asked the Commission to look into the fact that supermarkets’ own meat cutting plants are not covered by the same hygiene regulations as independent plants, even though they often process more meat.
So the Commission is carrying out a fact finding exercise, to make sure consumers are properly protected.
No changes have been proposed and none could enter into force without full scrutiny by MEPs and national ministers.