An EU draft regulation on essential oils has revived fears of a ‘European conspiracy’ against a rose oil, considered a national symbol of Bulgaria, Kapital Insights and Euractiv reported.
The planned revision of the regulation for evaluating and authorizing chemicals has raised concerns in the essential oils sector.
In Bulgaria, these fears evolved into a conspiracy theory, led by Euroskeptic politicians, that “the Commission wants to ban the Bulgarian rose”.
The reality is much more nuanced, however, and there is no immediate risk for the moment that the iconic Bulgarian product will be banned.
Panic in the essential oils sector followed the announced changes to the regulation, which the European Commission is expected to table towards the end of the year.
Bulgarian manufacturers are worried that their product will be seen as toxic following a revised definition of essential oils as chemical products.
Bulgarian media recently published a statement by the mayor of Kazanlak – a city close to the Rose valley – in which she claimed that the European Commission is about to ban rose oil.
The topic was then seized upon by social networks, sympathizers and activists from the far-right political party Vazrazhdane.
The European Commission has declined to commit to moving forward with the delayed revision of the regulation on chemicals on the back of a deepening rift between the Socialists and center-right groups of the European Parliament.