Harvesting time for Finnish strawberries approaching - verify what you buy
The origin of the berries has to be recorded when selling strawberries in shops and stalls at a market. Every year some batches of strawberries of a falsified origin are brought to the attention of the authorities.
The consumer can have an impact on the correctness of the information given. It is only worth buying strawberries from such a place where the country of origin is clearly marked on the sales sign. In places where strawberries are sold loose, empty packaging boxes can also be found where the buyer can verify the name and address of the grower. Sometimes even the day of picking is found on the boxes, and so the freshness of the berries can be verified.
The quality of the strawberries will be better if the berries are not poured onto the counter and then scooped up for the customer. That is why it can be good to favour berries that are presented for sale in pre-packaged boxes or that are even picked straight into the containers for sale.
When buying strawberries that are pre-packaged it is worth checking that there is a sign at the place where the open containers are for sale where the country of origin of the strawberries is visible. If the strawberries are packaged into containers with lids, the name of the country of origin and the grower have to be displayed on the packaging.
Sellers that have a fixed spot throughout the year at the market square generally adhere well to the labelling requirements and also require proper labelling from their supplier. Sellers with fixed market stalls are also under continual supervision from the authorities.
It is also possible is to buy the strawberries straight from a known grower. Contact information for growers with direct sales is found on the internet using the search words ”suoramyynti + mansikka”.
The municipal health inspectors and the TE-centres’ inspectors of marketing standards for fruit and vegetables make sure that the legislation is being adhered to. They carry out spot checks in market squares and at retail sales outlets.
For additional information, please contact:
Senior Officer Beata Meinander, Evira, tel. 020 77 25044
Inspector Mari Järvenmäki, Evira, tel. 020 77 25143