The logos aiming to protect our pork pies and Stilton

New regulations and logos have been unveiled which are designed to protect the geographical origin of foods such as Melton pork pies and Stilton cheese.
The new logos unveiled by Defra to be used on protected food packaging such as Melton pork pies and Stilton cheese after the UK leaves the EU EMN-200411-102441001The new logos unveiled by Defra to be used on protected food packaging such as Melton pork pies and Stilton cheese after the UK leaves the EU EMN-200411-102441001
The new logos unveiled by Defra to be used on protected food packaging such as Melton pork pies and Stilton cheese after the UK leaves the EU EMN-200411-102441001

Both of these local brands, along with more than 80 others across the UK, currently enjoy protection from being imitated by EU laws.

But when the nation leaves the EU on January 1, a new scheme will kick in to replace the initiative.

The Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has revealed a set of logos which producers will need to put on their packaging before January 1, 2024.

The Dickinson and Morris Melton Mowbray pork pie EMN-200511-171327001The Dickinson and Morris Melton Mowbray pork pie EMN-200511-171327001
The Dickinson and Morris Melton Mowbray pork pie EMN-200511-171327001

They have been created to let shoppers know that the products have Geographical Indications (GI) and can only be made in a specific area of the country and to a certain recipe.

Environment secretary George Eustice said the scheme would ‘ensure we continue to recognise and celebrate protected food names and local recipes across our country’.

He added: “The new logos will become a staple on supermarket aisles in the UK and mean shoppers will be able to pick the best of British, from Scotch whisky and Welsh lamb to Cornish clotted cream.”

The new protection only extends to the UK, however, and it would need to be part of a trade agreement to be extended in Europe and other parts of the world.

One of Long Clawson Dairy's champion cheeses from the 2018 Melton Fatstock Show, Blue Stilton EMN-200511-171351001One of Long Clawson Dairy's champion cheeses from the 2018 Melton Fatstock Show, Blue Stilton EMN-200511-171351001
One of Long Clawson Dairy's champion cheeses from the 2018 Melton Fatstock Show, Blue Stilton EMN-200511-171351001

Some food products were protected as part of the recent trade deal made with Japan and the government says it is committed to striking others with nations such as the USA to ensure the authenticity of UK food names remain protected overseas as well.

Melton MP Alicia Kearns, who was founder and chair of the APPG for Geographically Protected Foods in parliament, told the Melton Times: “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.

“I’ve worked hard to secure enhanced protections for foods with geographical significance and launched the APPG on Geographically Protected Foods earlier this year to do just that.

“I’m delighted with the APPGs 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.”