Brussels assists equal Hellim/Halloumi protection
London Liberal Democrat MEP Sarah Ludford has welcomed the news that the Republic of Cyprus has withdrawn an application for the traditional Cypriot cheese to be given EU recognised protected origin (PDO) status only as Halloumi.
Sarah Ludford worked with her LibDem colleague Andrew Duff MEP in urging the European Commission to ensure that there would be no discrimination against production and export of the similar cheese from North Cyprus, where it is known as Hellim.
Commissioner for enlargement Stefan Fule has confirmed in his reply that Halloumi application has now been withdrawn. He goes on to urge a ‘mutually acceptable and sustainable solution’ through comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem.
Sarah Ludford commented:
“The threat in the immediate future of a PDO for Halloumi which might have locked Hellim producers out of markets has been averted, but it should never have been submitted unilaterally. There needs to be either a joint Hallloumi/Hellim application or the parallel approval of 2 applications.”
“The Commission is right in urging a resolution of divisions in Cyprus. But until that happy day arrives, the Commission needs to remember that it was Greek Cypriots who rejected the 2004 Annan Plan while Turkish Cypriots approved it and to respect the subsequent EU promise to end the isolation of the Turkish Cypriots."
Notes to Editors
Sarah is pictured with (in centre) Osman Ertug, North Cyprus Presidential spokesman on Cyprus negotiations on a visit to the European Parliament on June 20th, and her Liberal group colleague Metin Kazak MEP from the Bulgarian Turkish community.
Sarah Ludford’s previous press release on this issue can be read at: http://www.sarahludfordmep.org.uk/node/2067