Romanian mici sausage reportedly gets reprieve after EU agrees it can have bicarbonate of soda

Romania's national dish looks like it will be granted a reprieve under new European Union rules.

The Romanian Meat Association says officials in Brussels have agreed that bicarbonate of soda, which gives spicy "mici" bullet-shaped grilled meat delicacies their springy texture, will be permitted by the EU.

Romanian food industry officials said Monday they have been lobbying Brussels since a ban last July on mici. Romanians eat half a million of the skinless sausages a day.

Kevin Hill, a chef in charge of restaurants that sell 6,000 mici a day, said the EU was concerned the additive was being used to disguise bad meat.

The EU's food safety committee will vote Feb. 20 on the additive, followed by a vote in the European Parliament.