Flickr/Janet McKnight

Shelf

Swiss miss. Nestlé will lose its right to bear the Swiss cross on 80 of its brands because of a new law that legislates ‘Swissness,’ FoodNavigator reports.

80 percent of a product’s raw materials must be Swiss in origin.

Approved in September 2015, by the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property’s Federal Council, the new ‘Swissness’ criteria (which goes into force on January 1, 2017) aims to strengthen protection of the “Made in Switzerland” designation; specifically, establishing the rules by which a product may be labeled as being Swiss.

For producers, the regulation means that 80 percent of a product’s raw materials must be Swiss in origin. Milk and milk used in dairy products must be 100 percent Swiss. FoodNavigator reports Nestlé analyzed all potential ‘Swissness-relevant’ products (about 650 recipes in total) in advance of the legislation. Some products were able to be tweaked and maintain the cross, while others–Thomy mayo and Frisco ice cream, for example–will lose it.

CEO of Switzerland Christophe Cornu told a German newspaper that the company uses only free-range eggs for its Thomy products, and requires 34 million a year–a quantity Switzerland alone cannot supply. Nestlé is forced to turn to other European suppliers who nonetheless, Cornu claims, meet all the Swiss quality standards.  It is purely an issue of sourcing.  What a cross to bear.

Kate Cox

Kate Cox is The New Food Economy's editor. In her former life, she was a freelance health policy reporter for radio and text. @thekatecox . Reach her by email at: kate.cox@newfoodeconomy.org.

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