2000 lei fine for a company distributing food stuffs marketed as Szekler flavoured.
“There is no such thing as Szekler flavor, food stuffs can be only sweet, bitter or sour”, declared Mircea Diacon, the director of Covasna County Counsumer Protection Directorate, after fining a local company for marketing some of its food stuffs as “Szekler flavoured”, obliging them to change the label of the product. The company, where food stuffs passed their expiration date were also found, was fined for 2000 lei. Asked if he believed that the term “Szekler flavor” can be used as a slogan of a product, Diaconu replied that “nowadays the term Szekler is being used in a more and more ridiculous manner, it is possible that soon the Szekler toilet paper or the Szekler cemetery will also appear. It is not appropriate to use this term when it comes to food stuffs.” He also ironically asked one of the reporters if he ever tasted a Szekler.
In the same time, he declined to comment the fact that other companies have been marketing their products as “Romanian flavored”, for example the “Gusturi Românesti” product family of the Mega Image multinational company. No fines were given for marketing food stuffs called Romanian flavored, or for “muschi tiganesc” (Gipsy meat) or “salam sasesc” (Saxon salami). So the fine is clearly discriminatory.
The owner of the fined company, István Mózes declared that labels in question were both in Romanian and Hungarian, and that the inspectors of the Consumer Protection Directorate have been supervising his company many times in the past and have expressed their discontent with the name of the products. After he refused to change the name of the food stuffs, they ran an in depth inspection, until they have found a legal reason to fine him. He also said he finds himself forced to change the name of the products, because he does not want to challenge the authorities.