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The European Union (EU) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC) recently completed negotiations for an Economic Partnership Agreement that includes a provision that offers the EU protection for certain geographical indications (GIs) for cheese, according to the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA).
The SADC countries included in the agreement with the EU include South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, and Swaziland.
USDA’s FAS reported that, on February 4, 2014, as part of the negotiating process of the Economic Partnership Agreement, the South African Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) issued a government notice, listing the names of certain products that the EU requested to be protected on the basis of their geographical indications. These cheeses include, among others, Feta, Gorgonzola, Asiago and Fontina.
FAS was advised by a government source that the DTI notice issued in February merely contains the partial “GI request list” from the EU, and that no decision had been made on the extent of the protection of the names. Specifics of the protection will be published once the process is complete.
“It’s unfortunate that South Africa agreed to the EU’s aggressive agenda on GIs,” said Clay Hough, senior group vice president for IDFA. “The EU’s list includes common cheese names such as ...more
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