Finland’s Peer Review primarily focuses on the fruit and vegetable import quality inspection system. The climate of Finland is characterised by long, cold and dark winters and short growing periods, so Finland relies on imports of fruit and vegetables all around the year. Bananas are the main imported fruit; others are apples, table grapes, small citrus fruits and oranges. In the vegetable group, tomatoes, lettuces, peppers and cucumbers are the most dominant products. During the summer time Finland produces mostly vegetables and berries for the national market. Finland has two inspection services that collaborate and coordinate fruit and vegetables inspections. The Finnish Customs (TULLI) focuses on imports and exports while the Food Safety Authority (Evira), with the help of the ELY Centres (Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment) oversee fruit and vegetables at the wholesale and retail level, under the supervision of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. Moreover, the Peer Review also outlines recommendations on possible further improvements in the Finnish quality inspection system such as the use of fees, improvements in the inspections conditions and to study the feasibility of increasing the number of staff assigned to inspections.
The Peer Review is part of a series of reviews of national fruit and vegetables systems undertaken within the programme of work of the OECD Fruit and Vegetables Scheme. The main objective of the Scheme is to facilitate international trade through the harmonisation of the implementation and, interpretation of marketing standards. Moreover, it provides a complete, internationally harmonised export quality inspection system for member countries, as well as guidelines and explanatory brochures of international quality standards for fruit and vegetables.
This Peer Review and other publications of the Scheme are available on the official OECD website: www.oecd.org/tad/fv.