BRUSSELS, Belgium – The European Union restricted imports of Ukrainian sunflower oil Friday amid a health scare over tainted shipments.
Imports from the Ukraine will only be allowed after strict checks to ensure they are free from mineral oil contamination, the EU said. Authorities in France, Spain and Greece have reported finding shipments of Ukrainian cooking oil tainted with mineral oil.
In a statement Friday, the European Commission said the EU's 27 member nations will have to sample and analyze each consignment of Ukrainian sunflower oil to ensure it does not contain levels of mineral oil that make it unfit for human consumption.
National authorities must alert the EU if they find more contamination.
Following discovery of the tainted oil, the EU had recommended that nations halt all imports of Ukrainian sunflower oil on May 16, pending the setting up of a system of controls.
The EU said it would review the rules within a year.