CNA News

Agriculture Ministry welcomes EU General Court decision on ‘halloumi’

The Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment welcomes Wednesday’s decision of the EU General Court rejecting the action for annulment of the European Commission’s regulation dated 12/4/2021, which registered the name halloumi in the PDO registry.

The General Court earlier on Wednesday dismissed the action for annulment concerning the Commission’s Implementing Regulation registering ‘halloumi’ (Hellim) as a protected designation of origin (PDO).

A press release issued by the Ministry of Agriculture said the next important milestone will be publication of the new European regulation on Geographical Indications, expected next March and provides for the possibility of extending the transitional period by five years for the implementation of the production specifications of the product.

It reminded that as announced on January 26, 2024, in the coming period the President of the Republic will convene a meeting in the presence of all stakeholders in the halloumi production sector (cheesemakers, cow farmers, sheep and goat farmers), where the Government’s decisions will be announced.

The Ministry emphasised that it continues “the hard work, on the basis of the implementation of the Governance Programme, with actions aimed at protecting and promoting PDO halloumi and intensifying certification checks on the authenticity of the produced PDO halloumi, as defined by the specifications approved by the EU”.

We are proceeding, it continued,  with the training of the Interdisciplinary Committee, “with the participation of all stakeholders, as well as with the creation of software for measuring the quantity of sheep and goat milk”.

It further noted that, regarding the minimum proportion of goat and sheep milk in the raw materials used for the manufacture of halloumi, the relevant Decree of the Minister of Energy, Commerce and Industry setting the quotas is in force.

For the period between 31 January and 21 February 2024 inclusive, the quota is 19% and for the period between 22 February 2024 and 9 July 2024 inclusive, it is 25%.