News story

Legendairy news for Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar

Scottish Secretary welcomes protected status for one of Orkney's most famous exports.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


The Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael has welcomed the protected status for one of Orkney’s most famous exports.

Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar has been granted Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status under the EU Protected Food Names (PFN) scheme.

Under this system a named food or drink registered at a European level will be given legal protection against imitation throughout the EU. Registration can help Scottish producers take advantage of the wider markets both in the UK and abroad that are arising from consumers’ increasing awareness of the importance of regional and speciality foods. Registered products are entitled to carry an EU symbol which can help consumers recognise product as traditional and authentic.

Today’s news means that Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar becomes the UK’s 57th product since 1992 to be protected under the scheme. It joins fellow UK cheeses like Stilton Blue and West Country Farmhouse Cheddar and some of Scotland’s most famous food and drink produce like Arbroath Smokies, Stornoway Black Pudding and Scotch Whisky

Mr Carmichael said:

I am absolutely delighted that Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar has been granted protected status. Orkney’s cheese making industry has a long history and is regarded as a symbol of excellence. This news provides valuable protection for one of the island’s most loved products.

Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar has been a regular fixture on the Carmichael family dinner table for many years. This news means that families, individual and businesses across Europe and beyond will enjoy one of Scotland’s most famous cheeses knowing what they are buying is genuine high quality cheddar from Orkney.

Protected status for Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar reflects the hard work the UK Government is undertaking through our strong voice in Europe and our diplomatic, consular and trade networks across the globe to open new doors and ensure protection for Scotland’s high quality food and drink exports.

I want to encourage more food and drink companies across Scotland to follow Orkney Scottish Island Cheddar’s lead and consider if this scheme will benefit them. As Secretary of State for Scotland I am right behind them.

The designations under the EU Protected Food Name Scheme are:

Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) - products produced, processed and prepared with features and characteristics due to the geographical area.

Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) - products produced or processed or prepared and have features or certain qualities attributable to a geographical area.

Traditional Speciality Guaranteed (TSG) - does not refer to the product’s origin but highlights traditional character, either in the composition or means of production.

Published 22 November 2013