Special treatment for the Swedes? Typical.
The EU laws are there for a reason, you know. Bananas are not supposed to be bendy, cucumbers must be uniform and straight or else they cannot fulfil their purpose in life. That is so because the people of Brussels have spoken and said so. So. There. You. Go.
Except, there are exceptions and lately, some of us Danes and Norwegians at SK and realising it is always the Swedes who have to be difficult and different and get special treatment.
First up, SNUS:
Snus is basically tobacco compressed into little pouches that look at bit like teabags that you stuff up under your top lip instead of smoking a cigarette. if you are hardcore you get the "loose" snus which is the same thing but without the bag around it. Either way, until you get the hang of it, you look like you have a fat lip.
The EU banned Snus quite a few years ago, but Sweden got an exception to this because of tradition. So far, so good.
But NOW we're learning that the EU also gave special permission to Sweden for fermented herring. A-ha! Yes, Surstromming contains a seriously high level of dioxins, which are not very good for you at all, really. So, the Brussels people banned it in 2002 but gave Sweden exception. See? There they go again, always wanting to be different, getting special treatment.
The exception runs out in 2011 and currently, Sweden's agriculture minister is pleading with the EU to extend the permission to eat rotten herring that smells really, really bad.
EU commissioner John Dalli, who has been dealing with the case, was asked if he'd actually tried the delicacy and said he had been recommended not to go near it due to the awful smell.
Sexy Swedish Snus Man