Friday, 17 February 2017

Sheltered & Protected Food

Sheltered accommodation. Isn't all accommodation sheltered? Bit if a dart term really.

As part of its focus on Brexit, the Today Programme on Radio 4 yesterday was focusing on Cornwall. A Pasty Baron was interviewed about the Cornish pasty and it being a protected species under EU rules and the fact this may be under threat following Brexit.

Load of bloody nonsense all this protected food designation. For a start, a Cornish pasty has to be made of minced beef, potatoes, swede and onions. If it has anything else in it, it's not a true Cornish pasty, meaning the cheese and onion ones and the chicken ones you can buy at any pasty emporium in St Ives and labelled as a Cornish pasty is, by implication, not a Cornish pasty.

Should it matter where a foodstuff is made? It's not as if it's a guarantee of quality in any way, shape of form, Why is it that Stilton has to be made within a few square miles when Cheddar is made all over the world? This is especially daft when Stilton is not even real Stilton anymore as it's now made from pasteurised milk and by some quirk of fate this has been enshrined in the rules on Stilton manufacture. Idiocy! The real Stilton recipe with unpasteurised milk has to be called Stichelton. 

For a start it's anti-competitive and protectionist, as well as resulting in many millions of additional food miles in transporting it from its small region of manufacture to the point of sale. Foods should stand or fall according to their quality, not where they were made, unless they have a patent slapped on them, which I believe is almost impossible anyway and certainly not on simple recipes.

While on the subject of Brexit, Tony Blair has gone on a crusade to persuade the British public to to change their view on Brexit. Blair is perhaps not the ideal choice as persuader; however, Iain Duncan Smith said Mr Blair's comments were arrogant, utterly undemocratic and showed that the political elite was completely out of touch with the British people. It's a bit strong to say 'completely' when the majority was extremely narrow and all the polls say that if the referendum were to be rerun today the vote would go the other way. It's Duncan Smith who seems out of touch.

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