East Midlands MEP Emma McClarkin said local producers should not worry about new EU food hygiene legislation, affecting the re-use of jam jars and other glass food containers.
The legislation is designed to prevent chemicals leaching out of old containers and contaminating food, but the fear is that it also makes it illegal to re-use glass jars and sell them with other produce in them, as happens across the region at church fairs, summer fetes, and other charity events.
However, the MEP said that the regulation was very likely not intended to be interpreted in this way, and that people should carry on making jam as before.
Miss McClarkin said: “People should carry on jam-making just as they have always done. Of course it would be ridiculous to stop kind-hearted people making jam for charity and selling it in recycled jars.
“I think whoever issued this advice got a little carried away. I’m sure this is not what the regulation was intended to achieve and not how it would ever realistically be applied, but this is yet another example where the EU hasn’t thought through the consequences of its legislation and created panic instead of clarity.”