The product name ‘Greek yoghurt’ may not be protected by a geographical indication, but the European Commission made clear that the denomination ‘Greek yogurt’ cannot be used for yogurts produced outside Greece.
The Commission’s intervention came after a Czech Republic’s draft bill laying down requirements for milk and dairy products, ice creams and edible fats and oils included the term ‘Greek yogurt’, causing furore of the Greek Government.
Athens claimed that both the name ‘Greek’ yogurt and ‘Greek-style’ yogurt is contrary to the EU Regulation on the provision of food information to consumers, which says consumers should not be misled.
Greek Minister of Agricultural Development and Food, Evangelos Apostolou sent a letter to the EU’s agriculture and food safety Commissioners, Phil Hogan and Vytenis Andriukaitis, expressing his country’s position on the issue.
The EU commission is currently examining two letters on the actions of the Czech authorities on this issue received by the Greek government and the Federation of Greek Dairy Industries, and is reflecting on the follow-up actions.