The Association of Greek Meat Processing Industries (SEVEK) is taking steps to have the famous Gyros to be recognized with the European Union as a product with Protected Geographic Indication like Greek Feta and Greek Yogurt.
Gyros is the Greek delicacy where pieces of spicy meat are placed on a tall vertical rotisserie, in the shape of an inverted cone, which turns slowly in front of a source of heat. The Greek Gyros is traditionally made of pork and in last few years also from chicken meat.
It is always the outside of the meat that is firstly grilled, and it is sliced vertically in thin, crisp shavings when done. It is usually served wrapped in pita bread together with tomatoes, onions and yogurt-garlic tzatziki sauce.
In a statement the SEVEK announced that it is submitting a file to have the Greek Gyros registered in the EU Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) and Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) Registry.
At the same time, the Association explores the possibilities to have Gyros registered as ” Traditional Specialty Guaranteed” (TSG).
The three European Union schemes PDO, PGI and TSG promote and protect names of quality agricultural products and foodstuffs.
So far, the SEVEK is at the stage to explore the legal and real possibilities offered by the European system of product registration bout the authentic Greek product.
Such registration will create added value at national, European and international level for the traditional Gyros, the statement said.
The first moves to create specifications for quality and product method were made in 2008.
The turnover from the Gyros Industry in Greece is estimated at 500 million euros [yearly?].
3.5 to 4.5 tones of Gyros and meat products like Souvlaki (meat on skewer) and Bifteki (minced meat patties) are yearly exported.
Under the EU’s protected name schemes, registered products receive Europe-wide legal protection against imitation, misuse and fraud.
Of course, EU Registry does not hinder some companies to keep violating the law, like some Danish companies that keep illegally exporting their “white cheese in brine of cow milk” labelling it as “feta”’. Now, they face EU probe.