SOFIA, March 14 (Xinhua) -- Bulgarian consumers suffered from the double standards of food in the European Union, a Bulgarian official complained here on Tuesday.
Bulgarian Ombudsman Maya Manolova made the complaint in her letters to European Commissioner on Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality Vera Jourova.
Large multinational companies that produce food and drinks offered products with much lower quality in Central and Eastern European countries, including Bulgaria, Manolova said.
Such practice of double standards put their consumers at a disadvantage compared to the countries of the so-called "old democracies", according to a statement released by Bulgaria's Ombudsman.
The ombudsman notified that these companies even offered products which threaten the health and lives of citizens.
Manolova said most common consumers of the lower quality and harmful products were children, whose growing organisms needed healthy and nutritious food.
Some 26.2 percent of Bulgarian children aged 5 to 18 were overweight, and the country ranked fifth in childhood obesity among 32 countries of the 53-member region of the World Health Organization in Europe, according to the letters.
Manolova urged the European Commission not to allow the sale of products with the same brand but of different quality among the EU countries, as well as to create European legislation to stop the discrimination and double standards for Bulgarian consumers.
Bulgaria, a Balkan country in South-Eastern Europe, joined in the EU in 2007.