Focus and use
The EU operates a Protected Food Name scheme which identifies regional and traditional foods whose authenticity and origin can be guaranteed. Under this system a named food is registered at a European level and will then be given legal protection against imitation throughout the EU. One of three specific schemes can be used, each with its own identifying mark; Protected Designation of Origin (PDO); Protected Geographical Indication (PGI); and Traditional Speciality Guaranteed (TSG).
Producers who register their products for protection, benefit from having a raised awareness of their product throughout Europe. This may in turn help them take advantage of consumers’ increasing awareness of the importance of regional and speciality foods.
These schemes are not seafood specific; they may be applied to many different types of food or specific product. For example, Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar has a PGI; as does Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb.
The scheme is also open for seafood products to apply for Protected Food Name status, Scottish farmed salmon; Scottish wild salmon and Arbroath Smokies all current hold PGI status.
Overview of the three marks
Protected Designation of Origin (PDO): This may be used for products which are produced, processed and prepared within a particular geographical area, which have features and characteristics which must be attributable to the geographical area
Protected Geographical Indication (PGI): This is used for products which must be produced or processed or prepared within a geographical area and have a reputation, features or certain qualities attributable to that area
Traditional Speciality Guaranteed (TSG): This is open to products which are traditional or have customary names and have a set of features which distinguish them from other similar products. These features must not be due to the geographical area the product is produced in nor entirely based on technical advances in the method of production.
A quick visual guide to the marks can be found here: click here
Applications may be made by producers or interested stakeholders to national governments for any of the three schemes. There are a number of stages through which applications then pass, with further assessment by government. There is a national public consultation process through which opposition can be made. Once this is complete, the application is made to the European Commission where it is assessed and again opportunity is given for opposition at EU level. If no opposition is received, the product is registered as a protected food name
Further information regarding the three types oif Protected Food Name can be found on the Scottish Government website here: click here
A page answering FAQ’s here: click here
Further details and contact numbers for producers interested in enquiring about making applications under the scheme: click here