Food Law News - EU - 1998
23 July 1998: ORIGIN MARKING - Commission approves an EU symbol for designations of origin and geographical indications for agricultural products and foodstuffs
Commission Press Release (IP/98/678 ), 23 July 1998
Commission approves an EU symbol for designations of origin and geographical indications for agricultural products and foodstuffs
The European Commission has adopted a regulation put forward by Franz FISCHLER, Commissioner for Agriculture and rural development, to create an European Union (EU) symbol (logo) to label agricultural and food products whose names are registered under the Protection of Designations of Origin (PDO) and Geographical Indications (PGI) legislation. The newly created logo will allow producers of food products to increase awareness of their products amongst consumers. The existence of this logo is a genuine guarantee for all European consumers, making it clear that the special nature of this product lies in its geographical origin. As for the producers, they are provided with an interesting marketing tool. So far, about 500 products have been registered about a quarter of which are cheeses and including other products such as meat products, meat, olive oil, fruit, vegetables, honey, etc.
When a food product becomes well-known outside its area of origin, it may find itself competing in the marketplace with imitation products making use of the same name. This unfair competition not only undermines the efforts made by the producer or manufacturer to acquire the good name in the first place, it leaves consumers confused as to which product is genuine and which a copy. This is why in 1992 the EU introduced legislation on geographical indications and designations of origin in an attempt to harmonize this protection on EU level.
The newly created logo will allow producers of food products to increase awareness of their products amongst consumers. The graphics of the logo combines neatly with the 12-star symbol of the EU. Its colours are kept in blue and yellow. A graphical representation of furrows in a ploughed field is incorporated in the center of a figure of the sun as a reference to the origin and geographical provenance of the products identified by the logo.
To use the EU symbol and the indications, the technical reproduction rules laid down in the graphics manual must be complied with. As well, a Member State may stipulate that the name of the inspection authority or body falling within its own inspection structure must appear on the label of the agricultural product or foodstuff.
The following are the English symbols given in the published Regulation No 1726/98 (see OJ L224, 11.08.1998):
UK List of protected agricultural and food products
(Note: the press release includes listings for all EU countries)
(PDO: Protected of Designations of Origin, PGI: Protected Geographical Indication)
- Orkney beef (PDO)
- Orkney lamb (PDO)
- Scotch beef (PGI)
- Scotch lamb (PGI)
- Shetland lamb (PDO)
Fruits, Vegetabls and Ceeals
- White Stilton cheese (PDO)
- Blue Stilton cheese (PDO)
- West Country farmhouse Cheddar cheese (PDO)
- Beacon Fell traditional Lancashire cheese (PDO)
- Swaledale cheese (PDO)
- Swaledale ewes' cheese (PDO)
- Bonchester cheese (PDO)
- Buxton Blue (PDO)
- Dovedale cheese (PDO)
- Single Gloucester (PDO)
- Teviotdale cheese (PGI)
Fish, Molluscs, Crustaceans etc
- Jersey Royal potatoes (PDO)
- Herefordshire cider/perry (PGI)
- Worcestershire cider/perry (PGI)
- Gloucestershire cider/perry (PGI)
- Newcastle brown ale (PGI)
- Kentish ale and Kentish strong ale (PGI)
- Rutland bitter (PGI)
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