Rapeseed oil becomes the new sunflower oil in Belgium

Belgian food companies have massively replaced the ingredient sunflower oil with rapeseed oil. The war in Ukraine caused a shortage of sunflower oil, an important ingredient in many processed food products. The switch was made mainly to rapeseed oil, it now appears, and to a much lesser extent to rapeseed lecithin, soy lecithin or palm oil.

Rapeseed is grown in Belgium and amounts to 10,000 ha, of which more than 90% is found in the Walloon part of the country. Besides it is imported from other European countries.

Since May Belgium had already made it possible for producers to make replace sunflower oil with an alternative without altering the labels on the packaging. The exemption procedure was valid for six months and will be probably extended until ​ 3 November. This was announced today by the FPS Economy.

Moreover, the FPS Economy does not exclude that there will be further exception procedures for other products. "We are seeing signals in Germany and the Netherlands about a shortage of maize starch. And we are also concerned about red fruit, 80 per cent of which comes from Ukraine", Henk De Pauw of the FPS Economy said.


© BELGA PHOTO - Rapeseed flower field in France.

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