The European Commission announced on Wednesday it was suing Denmark for exporting white cheese labelled as ‘Feta’ to non-EU countries, breaching the rules as Feta is a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) cheese of Greece.
The Commission opened infringement proceedings against Denmark over the issue in January 2018 but said that the country had not addressed the issues raised.
“Since Denmark has not addressed the issues raised, the Commission has decided to refer the case to the Court of Justice of the EU,” the Commission said.
‘Feta’ has been a registered Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) since 2002 in the EU and as such, it can only be produced in Greece according to a set of production specifications.
In a statement, the Commission said that Denmark-based companies continue to produce and export the cheese, in direct breach of EU agricultural laws. In its referral, it charged Denmark with “failing to prevent or stop” the practice.
The Commission also stressed that “this conduct not only violates current EU law, but it is also likely to frustrate the ongoing negotiations between the European Union and third countries for the conclusion of bilateral agreements that ensure the protection of European PDOs and the promotion of EU quality products outside the EU.”