Feta battle won, but terms must be obeyed

As local dairy producers celebrated the European Union’s designation of feta cheese as an exclusively Greek product, the Ministry of Agriculture yesterday warned cheesemakers not to deviate from strict EU production guidelines. «The terms and preconditions include the production area, the provenance of ingredients, the traditional production method and proper labeling,» Deputy Agriculture Minister Fotis Hadzimichalis said. «Dairy producers, cheesemakers, traders and consumers must make sure these terms are met.» After a 13-year fight, on Monday Greece secured an EU decision banning other countries from calling their versions of the white goat or sheep’s milk cheese feta. «The dairy industry will now be able to increase feta exports… and will no longer suffer unfair competition from other white brine cheeses,» the Greek dairy industries’ federation enthused.