Rutland and Melton MP Alicia Kearns has welcomed new rules and logos to guarantee the authenticity and origin of British foods.
In February, Ms Kearns launched the APPG on Geographically protected foods which sought to ensure the introduction of a simple, robust and inclusive mechanism to protect culturally and geographically significant British food as the Transition Period ends.
Rutland and Melton MP Alicia Kearns. Photo: Supplied.
The Government has recently announced that new rules and logos to protect British food and drink, guaranteeing the authenticity of regional and traditional foods for shoppers and protecting British producers from imitation, will be introduced at the end of the Transition Period.
All existing UK products registered under the EU’s GI schemes by the end of the transition period will remain protected under the UK’s new GI schemes.
“Not only will they protect our three wonderful locally produced GIs (Rutland Bitter, Melton Mowbray Pork Pies and Stilton Cheese), but will raise awareness of them across the country and world.” Rutland and Melton MP Alicia Kearns
The new independent Geographical Indications (GI) schemes will ensure popular and traditional British produce will be granted special status to mark out their authenticity and origin, for example; Melton Mowbray Pork Pies.
This means that shoppers will be able to buy their favourite food and drink with confidence, and producers whose foods are granted GI status will benefit from intellectual property protection so that others cannot imitate them.
Alicia, who is also Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Geographically Protected Foods, said: “These new protections are hugely important in safeguarding the integrity of traditional local foods long after the Transition Period ends, protecting them from imitation and recognising their significance to UK producers and consumers.”
“Since December, I’ve been lobbying the Government to ensure the integrity of our local food and standards are safeguarded throughout BREXIT. I was proud to establish the All Party Parliamentary Group for Geographically Protected Foods and I’m delighted with its role in shaping these protections, ensuring local foods like Stilton and Melton Mowbray Pork Pies, are at the heart of trade negotiations as we saw with the new UK-Japan deal which will protect 70 GIs”
“The new Geographical Indications schemes are good news for us here in the rural capital of food. Not only will they protect our three wonderful locally produced GIs (Rutland Bitter, Melton Mowbray Pork Pies and Stilton Cheese), but will raise awareness of them across the country and world.”
The new scheme will use three designations: Protected Designation of Origin, Protected Geographical Indication an d Traditional Speciality Guaranteed. Additionally, from 1 January 2021 all UK GIs registered under the EU GI schemes by the end of the Transition Period will continue to receive protection in the EU.
The UK Government is also working to expand and increase the number of GI protections through Free Trade Agreements. The recently announced UK-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement will offer new protection for more iconic UK goods – increasing GIs from just seven under the terms of the EU-Japan deal to potentially over 70 under this new agreement, which would lead to improved recognition of key UK brands in the Japanese market.