The EU's Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) scheme is defined in Regulation (EU) No 1151/2012 of the European Parliament and supplemented by Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 664/2014 (http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/en/TXT/?uri=CELEX:32014R0664). It is intended to provide consumers with assurance that a product is produced in a specific geographical region using local ingredients and the expertise of local producers. The legislation repeatedly mentions "traditional" production methods, but I can't see a clarification of how this is defined or how flexible it is.

I am particularly interested in one example: the Alentejano breed of pig has PDO recognition (this links to a page in English describing the breed and a link to a PDF of the product specification, the latter in Portuguese). I have previously been told that farmers are reluctant to change from using traditional thick adobe-walled buildings to metal pig arks because it is less traditional, even though these result in a lower risk of certain parasites and diseases. Can anyone explain whether changing pig housing in this case might represent any risk to being able to label the resulting products with the PDO certificate, or (if this is not clear) what additional information would allow it to be answered?

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    Point E.3 of the specification document details the handling requirements. It begins by stating "cada reprodutora pare duas vezes por ano, nas malhadas tradicionais ou ao ar livre, sob abrigo de tipo cabana", which I translate as "each breeder stops twice a year, in traditional or outdoor spots, under a hut type shelter". Unfortunately malhadas and cabana are not further defined within the document. Agricert are responsible for independently certifying whether the specification has been met—perhaps ask them? – eggyal Feb 12 '18 at 11:39
  • @eggyal good idea; I've contacted them via email. If I get a reply I'll post it. – tardigrade Feb 12 '18 at 12:15

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