EU-China protect GI products
European Commission announced it has reached a landmark agreement with China to protect 100 European Geographical Indication (GI) products, including 26 Italian ones, in China and 100 Chinese GI in the EU.
The emblematic Italian food products such as Barolo wine, Prosciutto di Parma ham and Grana Padano cheese will now have greater protection from imitation on the wast Chinese market.
Among the Chinese products to feature in the agreement are Pixian Dou Ban (Pixian Bean Paste), Anji Bai Cha (Anji White Tea), Panjin Da Mi (Panjin rice) and Anqiu Da Jiang (Anqiu Ginger).
Four years after coming into force, the scope of the agreement will continue to expand to cover an additional 175 GI names from the EU and China.
“European Geographic Indication products are renowned across the world for their quality,” said European Agriculture and Rural Development Commissioner Phil Hogan. “Consumers are willing to pay a higher price, trusting the origin and authenticity of these products, while further rewarding farmers.
“This agreement shows our commitment to working closely with our global trading partners such as China. “It is a win for both parties, strengthening our trading relationship, benefitting our agricultural and food sectors, and consumers on both sides”.
EU quality schemes aim at protecting the names of specific products to promote their unique characteristics, linked to their geographical origin as well as traditional know-how. This is one of the great successes of European agriculture, with more than 3,300 EU names registered as either Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) or Protected Designation of Origin (PDO). A further 1,250 or so non-EU names are also protected within the EU, mostly thanks to bilateral agreements such as this one with China. In value terms, the market for EU geographical indications is around €74.8 billion, and together they account for 15.4% of total EU food and drinks exports.