The European Commission today decided to add the name of a traditional smoked mountain sheep cheese "Ovčí salašnícky údený syr" to the list of "traditional specialities guaranteed" (TSG) following an application from Slovakia.
TGS are, together with protected geographical indications (PGI) and protected designations of origin (PDO), the cornerstones of the EU agricultural quality policy that aims at promoting production of quality products and supporting rural development. Contrary to PGIs and PDOs, "traditional specialities guaranteed" do not refer to the origin of the product but highlight the traditional character, either in the composition or means of production – in this case, the fact that the cheese comes from sheep in mountain areas and is smoked in a traditional way.
This registration will not prevent other producers from using the name of the cheese, even if they do not follow the specifications approved. However, producers making "Ovčí salašnícky údený syr" using a different recipe would not be allowed to use the TSG label.
The name is added to the list of about 30 already existing TSGs.
The Commission is currently preparing legislative proposals for publication in December which will look at new elements of quality policy, such as moves to help small farmers with direct sales and local markets.