|Cat and cuke|
As readers will be aware, PGIs identify products as originating from a region or particular locality. For a PGI product, its reputation for quality or authenticity is intimately linked to its geographical origin. In Europe, with its rich history of local and specialist agricultural production, many famous products are closely linked to their place of origin. The more well-known European examples include Parma Ham, Roquefort Cheese and Champagne. In the UK, these include the Melton Mowbray Pork Pie, the Cumberland Sausage, the Cornish Pasty, Jersey Royal Potatoes and Kentish Ale.
|Through a remarkable biological fluke,|
cats have evolved to be far better able
than humans to rip off the tough transparent
outer hide of the standard UK cucumber
‘The cucumbers produced here are of a higher quality than you'd get from other regions of the UK and abroad. … And if they are called “Lea Valley Cucumbers”, consumers would be more educated about where they come from.’The move is intended to boost the reputation of cucumbers after it was left in tatters following the E coli virus scare in Europe last summer (here and here). In particular, British cucumbers were boycotted after an outbreak of the infection in Germany was initially wrongly attributed to Spanish-grown varieties. It is estimated by the LVGA that its growers lost approximately £1.5 million per week due to the fall in sales and loss of consumer confidence.
In response, Derek Hargreaves, from the national Cucumber Growers Association said:
‘The cucumbers grown in this country commercially are pretty much the same. … I can't see the EU agreeing to protect one lot of cucumbers over another when they're grown the same way, in rockwool rather than soil.’The IPKat is not a connoisseur of raw, unpicked cucumbers and asks readers: is there really a difference between Lee Valley cucumbers and the rest?
Rockwool, a.k.a. mineral wool, here
Is rockwool safe for rats? Click here to find out
Lea Valley and water pollution here
The IPKat thanks his old friend Catherine Lee for providing this Epicurian epistle.