Cheese Fight: EU Court Scolds Denmark, Rules Feta is Exclusively Greek

European Union judges in Luxembourg ruled Thursday that Denmark was in violation of an EU geographic protection that declares “feta” a uniquely Greek cheese, a blow to Denmark, where companies had been labeling some hard cheeses as “feta” for nearly 60 years.

Denmark “failed to fulfill its obligations under EU law” by preventing Danish companies from exporting cheese labeled as “feta” outside the EU, the Luxembourg-based Court of Justice ruled, ending a 59-year era of Danish feta sales.

Feta is a traditional Greek cheese made from unpasteurized sheep or goat milk, which for the past 20 years has been declared by the EU not just a generic name, but a cheese that must come from Greece.

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