The European Commission approved the addition of ‘Tequila', a Mexican spirit drink, in the EU register of geographical indications (GI). The protection was granted under the EU spirits regulation of 2008, giving it the same recognition as EU spirit geographical indications.
Adopted on 27 February, the recognition at EU level enters into force today, 20 March 2019.
Phil Hogan, Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, said:
Tequila is the most emblematic alcoholic beverage produced in Mexico and it forms an important part of the Mexican cultural identity. We know very well in Europe how the international success of a regional spirit drink can help to create high-quality jobs in rural areas and generate a strong sense of local and national pride. I want to extend my heartfelt congratulations to our Mexican colleagues. The addition of Tequila to the EU GI Spirits is the latest step on the EU-Mexico journey of cooperation.
Tequila is obtained by distilling the juices extracted from the heart of the blue agave that may be enriched and blended with other sugars. The source of the raw material used to make the beverage and the processing are both located in several regions in the Centre and West of Mexico, including the actual town of Tequila in the state of Jalisco. The existence of blue agave and its different uses can be traced back to the pre-Colombian era. The word ‘Tequila' is derived from the Nahuatl terms 'tequi' and 'tlan', meaning ‘cutting place' or ‘place of paying tax'.
Today, Commissioner Hogan will hand over the certificate of registration for Tequila to H.E. Mr. Julián Ventura, the Mexican Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs and Mr. Rodolfo González González, Vice President treasurer of the Tequila Regulatory Council (TRC).
There are currently 31 geographical indications protected in the EU register originating from third countries (food, wines and spirits included), benefitting from the same protection and market added-value than EU protected products. Tequila will be the third spirit to join the EU register of GIs as a third country product. The two existing ones are Pisco from Peru and Ron de Guatemala.
20 March 2019