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EU trade deal could force name changes for cheeses, scotch made in NZ

Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Tuesday, 13 August 2019, 8:08PM
Fonterra's cheese factory at Waitoa in the Waikato. (Photo / Dean Purcell)

A European Union trade deal could force some brands to name their products,. 

In Australia, there's a change names of hundreds of products including feta, mozzarella, prosciutto and Scotch whisky.

The EU wants protections for food and drink brands in its region, and wants Aussie food and drink producers to re-badge some of their products, under a proposed free-trade deal.

If it goes ahead, it would force Australian feta-makers could be forced to refer to their cheese as "Australian feta" and local spirit distillers would need to avoid using the term "Scotch".

New Zealand is currently negotiating a trade deal, which would likely see the same rules enforced here. 

Mike Hannah, with the Specialist Cheesemakers Association, told Heather du Plessis-Allan that if a name originally had some regional name, then the EU claims protection. 

He says that there are not sure what names they will have to use, but has heard 'white salad cheese' be suggested. 

"Our local producers will have to compete a name they have been able to use today, but also European subsidies."

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