The cost of fraud and corruption to the European Union's (EU) food subsidy budgets continues to rise, with the European Commission being alerted to EUR102m (US$127.48m) worth of "irregularities" in 2005, compared to EUR82m in 2004.

In its latest report on fraud within EU institutions - a long-standing and expensive problem - the Commission did however note that the number of irregularities affecting food industry subsidies fell from 3,401 to 3,193. These figures of course do not include undetected successful frauds.

This money has been stolen or misallocated from the EU's European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF), its main food subsidy pot.