Today the first Turkish Cypriot ‘Χαλλουμι’ (Halloumi)/‘Hellim’ cheese producer was awarded the protected designation of origin (PDO) certificate under the EU quality scheme.
Following the registration of the name ‘Χαλλουμι’ (Halloumi)/‘Hellim’ as PDO, only Halloumi/Hellim produced on the island of Cyprus in accordance with the requirements of the related product specification can be marketed in the European Union as ‘Χαλλουμι’ (Halloumi)/‘Hellim’. This provides for the possibility for producers on both sides of the Green Line to apply for PDO certification of their products.
Thefirst control in the Turkish Cypriot community took place in February this year by Bureau Veritas, an internationally accredited body delegated to perform the related official controls throughout the island. The first producer from the Turkish Cypriot community was assessed to be compliant with the requirements set out in the ‘Χαλλουμι’ (Halloumi)/‘Hellim’ PDO product specification.
The PDO control and certification system by Bureau Veritas is in place since the application of the Commission Regulation registering ‘Χαλλουμι’ (Halloumi)/‘Hellim’ as PDO. A number of Halloumi producers established in the areas of the Republic of Cyprus under the effective control of the Government of the Republic of Cyprus have already received the PDO certification under this system.
Meanwhile, the measures concerning EU animal and public health requirements required to be fulfilled for the Turkish Cypriot community to fully benefit from the EU quality scheme by trading the PDO products across the Green Line still remain to be implemented.
The registration of ‘Χαλλουμι’ (Halloumi)/‘Hellim’, the most known cheese of Cyprus, as a PDO in 2021, enabled the producers from both Cypriot communities to benefit from this EU quality scheme.
Turkish Cypriot community still needs to implement measures related to EU sanitary and phytosanitary standards, before the ‘Χαλλουμι’ (Halloumi)/‘Hellim’ PDO cheese by Turkish Cypriot producers can be allowed to be marketed in the EU. This is expected by end of 2024.
The Commission is supporting this process and the Turkish Cypriot dairy sector under the Aid Programme for the Turkish Cypriot community.
- Publication date
- 28 March 2023
- Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development