In defence of the Cornish Pasty

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North Cornwall MP Dan Rogerson has defended the protected status for the Cornish Pasty as some retailers prepare to change the name of pasties not made to the traditional recipe in the Duchy.

As of this year, retailers will not be able to market products as Cornish Pasties unless they have been made in Cornwall to a traditional recipe.

Companies such as Greggs the Bakers have announced that are changing the name of their pasties as they contain carrots and peas which are not part of the traditional recipe.

The Cornish Pasty was given protected status in 2011 under European Union laws governing protected food names, but six major bakers were given a transition period to allow the changes to take place.

Dan Rogerson addresses Protected Food Names conference
Dan Rogerson addresses Protected Food Names conference

This has now expired and only pasties made in the traditional way in Cornwall containing potato, swede, onion, beef and seasoning can be sold as a ‘Cornish Pasty’.

Rogerson has been a vocal supporter of the Cornish food and drink industries. He spoke about the campaign for protected geographical indication status for the Cornish pasty in his first ever speech in Parliament in 2005 and campaigned against the so called ‘pasty tax’ in 2012.

He said: “It is right that any product that isn’t a Cornish pasty shouldn’t be sold as one.

“Not only is the pasty an important part of our regional culture, but the pasty industry is a major employer in Cornwall. Along with the rest of the Cornish food and drink industry it is a key part of our local economy.

“We fought long and hard for the pasty’s Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status to protect and promote Cornish jobs at traditional bakeries and specialist pasty-makers. The status also makes sure that consumers can guarantee that they are buying an authentic, high quality and genuinely Cornish pasty.”

As well as the Cornish Pasty, Cornish sardines have Protected Geographical Indication status, while Cornish Clotted Cream has ‘Protected Designation of Origin’ status under the same EU laws to guarantee that it is produced in Cornwall.