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Minister calls for ban on vegetarian "pseudo-meat" labels
December 28, 2016 / 6:21 PM / 9 months ago

Minister calls for ban on vegetarian "pseudo-meat" labels

German Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt answers reporters questions during a Reuters interview in Berlin, Germany July 4, 2016. REUTERS/Joachim Herrmann/File Photo

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany’s agriculture minister called on Wednesday for a ban on “pseudo-meat” labels such as “vegetarian schnitzel” and “vegan curry sausage”, arguing that they mislead consumers.

In a land famous for its love of the sausage and other pork and veal dishes such as schnitzel, the minister appeared to be backing the German Butchers’ Association, which has also called for a ban on such terms.

“I do not want us to pretend that these pseudo-meat dishes are meat dishes,” minister Christian Schmidt told Bild daily.

Asked specifically about vegetarian schnitzels and vegan curry sausages - a version of a popular Berlin pork delicacy - Schmidt said:

“These terms are completely misleading and unsettle consumers ... I will push for them to be banned in the interests of clear labelling for consumers.”

Schmidt, a Bavarian, has asked the European Commission to consider extending rules on product labelling which affect milk and cheese, to meat, his spokesman told a government news conference.

“We want to create clarity and transparency in a growing market,” the spokesman said.

Reporting by Madeline Chambers; editing by Andrew Roche

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