The announcement that Cornish Pasties have been awarded a Protected Geographical Indication status under European Commission rules has delighted many a pasty maker from Cornwall. The status allows only them to label their pasties Cornish using a strict traditional recipe, to the detriment of Greggs the Bakers who must now print out new labels for the packaging of non-Cornish pasties.
However, in a document leaked today, it is revealed that an announcement is due to be made in Brussels next month by the European Commission listing other foodstuffs to be given protected status.
From 1st March 2011 Shepherd's Pies can only be labelled as such if actually owned by a shepherd. Until then they must be listed as Public Pies.
Hardy Cringewell, a spokesman for a supermarket chain, explained the problems associated with the new rules:
'The issue is a logistical one. Technically the pie is, and will remain, a Public Pie unless it is actually purchased by a shepherd. If that happens then staff will have to remove the pie from its wrapping before the shepherd leaves the shop and replace it with the appropriately shepherd-labelled packaging to ensure we are not in breach of EU rules.'
Elsewhere Yorkshire Puddings can only be sold under that name if it can be proven that said pudding hails from Yorkshire and owns a whippet. The rules on Aunt Bessie's Yorkshire Puddings are more complex and risk the manufacturer pulling the beloved frozen treats from supermarket shelves permanently.
The rules on Granny Smith's Apples are even more bizarre and a legal minefield for any grocer. In paragraph 74, subsection B the leaked document states 'Granny Smith's Apples can only be named as such if it can be proven that the purchaser of said apple is of the female sex (either born as such or transgender) who has had a child (living or dead) who has at least one other child (living or dead) where the purchaser's name by birth, marriage or deed poll is confirmed to be "Smith".'
An EU representative, who we spoke to upon the condition of anonymity, said 'Eh?'
In an ironic twist of fate, Brussels has ruled that Brussels sprouts can be thus named regardless of their origin as they are trying to disassociate themselves from the vegetable.