Food Law News - EU - 2002

EP Daily Notebook, 5 December 2002

QUALITY - More protection for traditional, quality foodstuffs

Report on the proposal for a Council regulation amending Regulation (EEC) No 2081/92 on the protection of geographical indications and designations of origin for agricultural products and foodstuffs (COM(2002) 139))

Parliament voted today by 387 votes to 41, with 15 abstentions, to endorse the Commission's proposal to update EU legislation protecting the names of traditional, quality EU farm produce and bring it into line with international trade rules, subject to a set of non-binding amendments seeking to extend the range of product names to be covered and tighten up the provisions concerning non-EU products.

It has backed the Agriculture Committee in adding products such as mustard pastes, pastas, wool, osier and products derived from tobacco to the products for which EU producers will be able to request registration of Protected Designations of Origin (PDOs) and Protected Geographical Indications (PGIs).

Parliament also wants a ten-year transition period, instead of the Commission's proposed five years, before natural mineral and spring waters are removed from the regulation (on the grounds that they are covered under other legislation). The House supports extending protection to product names from WTO countries that are not members of the EU provided EU products enjoy equivalent protection outside the EU.

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