Worldwide sales of European Union (EU) geographical indication (GI)-protected cheeses - such as Grana Padano, Feta, and Roquefort - increased to more than €6bn in 2010, the European Commission (EC) has revealed.
Global sales of these GI cheese products increased from €5.77bn ($7.5bn) in 2009 to €6.3bn ($8.2bn) in 2010, the EC revealed in its study, Value of production of agricultural products and foodstuffs, wines, aromatised wines and spirits protected by a geographical indication.
“In 2010, the estimate of the sales value of cheeses under GI in the EU 27 was €6.3bn and the sales volume was 866,000 tonnes. This represented 10% of the EU production, this share remained stable over the period,” said the EC report.
GI-protected products are categorised under two EU schemes – protected designation of origin (PDO), and protected geographical indication (PGI) – which identify a good as originating in a region or locality in a particular country where a “given quality, reputation or other characteristic” is essentially attributable to its geographical origin.
French, Greek, Italian GI cheeses…
GI-status cheeses from Italy, France and Greece accounted for 90% of GI cheese sales by value and 88% of cheese sales by volume in 2010, the study added.
In Greece, the GI-protected cheese sector, which is made up largely of Feta, accounted for 54% of national cheese production in 2010. While the Italian GI cheeses sector – mainly Grana Padano and Parmigiano Reggiano – represented 38% of national cheese production in 2010.
In France in 2010, the GI cheese sector represented 10% of the national cheese industry. GI-protected cheeses Comté, Roquefort and Reblochon accounted for 38% of this share, the study added.
The EC report revealed data on a total of 2,768 GI-protected products including aromatic wines (4 GIs), wines (1,560), spirits (337), agricultural products and foodstuffs (867) from the 27 EU Member States.
The worldwide sales value of these GI-protected products was estimated at €54.3bn ($70.4bn) in 2010.
Click here to view the full report.