Green light to gruyère made in the USA
For a Virginia court, the name of the cheese no longer belongs only to France and Switzerland
It's not just Italian food that is being attacked by foreigners. Now, for example, it's the turn of the famous Gruyère cheese: in fact, a US appeals court ruled that the name could be used to label cheeses produced outside the Gruyère region in Switzerland and France.
More specifically, the Virginia Court of Appeals upheld an earlier decision that considered gruyère to be a generic term used for a range of cheeses. The decision was considered a victory for US dairy groups, including the Consortium for common food names, Usdec, i.e. the US Dairy export council and Nmpf, the National milk producers federation: all were part of a coalition of dairy industry stakeholders who supported the use of the term in the US market.
The ruling should put an end to attempts by Swiss and French consortia to block the use of a common food name by registering a certification mark in the United States. Usdec said the decision strengthens understanding that "generic terms like gruyère refer to types of foods and a method of production regardless of where they are produced".
Krysta Harden, president and CEO of USDEC, said: "The ruling represents an outstanding achievement for US producers and farmers. We are grateful that the Court of Appeals has ruled that no one has the exclusive right to use generic terms. This constitutes an extraordinary precedent for the right to use common food names in the U.S. Now we need other countries to stand up for what's right and defend this use as strongly."
"The announcement represents a significant victory for American dairy farmers - adds a satisfied Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of the Nmpf -. The organization rejects the blatant European attempts to unfairly limit competition from American companies and will continue to fight alongside of our allies to oppose attempts to monopolize foods with common names".
EFA News - European Food Agency