In the Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries the European legal framework for the protection of special quality agri-food products was adopted and harmonised with the respective national legislation. The origin-labeled products are in fact the corner stones of a European model of agriculture.
The indications of origin could work as a tool for protecting consumers' confidence in “special quality”products, but they could also be a basis for preserving cultural heritage by reinforcing the legal, economic and commercial assets of promoting and developing rural areas, as well as small and mediumsize enterprises (SMEs). The indication of origin as a global issue is meant to be solved through the international legislation of geographical indications (GI), but as international practice shows it - for instance that of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) - it does require clarification: new frames and repeated negotiations are needed.
The CEE countries have to find their particular role and special possibilities among the other EU countries. However, no comprehensive analytic framework and data set is yet available on their level, therefore one major challenge is to make use of their existing potential. Thus besides the given European legislative frame a chance should be given for their existing “special quality”products by helping them access the market.
This taut situation characterised by an increasingly liberalised commerce and that of an ever-changing European agricultural subsidies scheme leads us to realising the need of protecting and assisting market access through the means of collective marketing: the small quantity, but “special quality”agri-food products production scheme.
Barna Kovács. Economics and Social Sciences. Volume 27, Number 3 / December 2005
Created 03.12.09 Updated 14.11.11