Melton’s MP today (Wednesday) launched a new parliamentary group which aims to promote and protect geographically-protected food as the UK begins life outside the European Union.
Alicia Kearns, who was elected as member for Rutland and Melton in December, is keen to ensure that iconic foods - such as Stilton cheese, Melton Mowbray pork pies and Rutland Bitter produced in her constituency - continue to be made to specific recipes and in restricted local areas
She led the formation of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Geographically Protected Foods in a bid to protect the reputation of regional products, promote traditional and agricultural activity and eliminate non-genuine products, which may mislead consumers or be of inferior character.
Mrs Kearns, said: “I was excited to launch the APPG on Geographically Protected Foods this afternoon.
“Britain has a proud tradition of excellent food and drink from every corner of our country, which has played an integral role in shaping our communities and culture.
“As we transition out of the European Union, it is ever more important to have a simple, robust and inclusive mechanism to protect culturally and geographically significant food from all our communities.”
Mrs Kearns she will continue to work with local geographically-protected food producers and campaigns for her constituents and beyond to better understand the benefits of buying British, high welfare and environmental standards as well as supporting local economies.
Other MPs and parliamentary figures present at the launch of the new group were Trudy Harrison, John Stevenson, Ben Lake, Baron McNicol of West Kilbride, Baron Maginnis of Drumglass, Alistair Carmicheal, Deidre Brock, Fay Jones and Baroness Ludford and Scott Mann.
The government has said that geographically-protected which continue to enjoy their EU protection during the transition period post-Brexit and then a new scheme will begin to protect them when the withdrawal agreement is finalised in a year’s time.