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Countries that are candidates for EU accession face a complex and urgent task to adopt and implement the acquis communautaireon food safety. For the food industries in Candidate Countries, this implies that EU standards of food production and processing, quality and safety have to be met in order to ensure a high level of consumer protection and satisfaction. The purpose of this paper is to assess progress towards new levels of food safety performance in one Candidate Country, Hungary, in one food sector (fresh produce), and evaluate the capacity of the system to demonstrate quality assurance to the satisfaction of private customers and public regulators. The analysis of food safety performance has been undertaken using a novel application of the benchmarking methodology taking the UK fresh produce importing chain as the benchmark.

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