NICOSIA – Cyprus’ famed “white gold” halloumi cheese that doesn’t melt when grilled, making it so popular, can be sold outside the country by factories who still haven’t been certified for its production.
That was reported by Philenews which noted the cheese as the EU’s Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) to show it’s original and genuine and is a sole product of the country.
But there’s some confusion over why the factories who aren’t certified can sell the cheese elsewhere, including in the EU, which gave Cyprus the protection after other countries such as Bulgarian and Denmark were trying to market it.
In Cyprus the PDO and trademark protection which was an EU prerequisite is mandatory on all halloumi cheese and has seen the price rise some 20 percent because of that designation, the report said.
Philenews also reported that products that previously bore the name “halloumi” but did not meet the specifications are now sold in Cyprus under the label “Cypriot white cheese that can be grilled,” instead.
But overseas and within the 27-member EU, these same products still bear the “halloumi” label even though the grace period given for all to be carrying the PDO sign has expired, no reason given yet by the government.