Ceylon cinnamon receives geographical indication certification from the European Union
The European Union (EU) has awarded Geographical Indication (GI) certification to Ceylon cinnamon, the first GI-certified product from Sri Lanka. An official ceremony took place between the EU Delegation to Sri Lanka and the Sri Lanka Export Development Board (EDB).
The application for GI was made by the Sri LankaExport Development Board (EDB) and supported by the EU under the EU-Sri Lanka Trade Related Assistance Project and with technical assistance from UNIDO and of the International Trade Center (ITC).
EU Ambassador Denis Chaibi said: “IG is not just about linking a product to a place; it’s about recognizing the skills and achievements of the people who produce it.
In the case of Ceylon cinnamon, it is an endorsement of quality and recognition of the long tradition and rich history behind the production of this internationally renowned spice.
A strengthened competitive position for Ceylon cinnamon in the EU market will increase Sri Lanka’s exports and bring higher incomes and more jobs in the cinnamon value chain.
EDB Chairman Suresh D. de Mel said: “This achievement could not have come at a more opportune time than now, when Sri Lanka’s increased foreign exchange earnings are greater than ever. I encourage our cinnamon growers, processors and exporters to use the PGI logo and attract high quality, value added and premium markets.”
Sri Lanka is the world’s largest producer and exporter of cinnamon, accounting for 90% of the global market share.
Although there are many varieties of cinnamon, Ceylon cinnamon is pure and considered superior due to its delicate taste and properties that contribute to many health benefits.
The geographical indication, which protects the name and brand of a special product identified with a particular region and production practice, will differentiate Ceylon cinnamon from other inferior cinnamon and provide a competitive advantage.
Sri Lanka maintains fruitful trade relations with the EU.
The EU is Sri Lanka’s second largest export market and benefits from the EU’s Generalized System of Preferences (GSP+), which provides tariff reductions on various products and has given the island’s exporters a huge boost.
The European Union launched the “EU-Sri Lanka Trade Linked” project in 2015 to increase trade and competitiveness of Sri Lankan SMEs in regional and European markets. This €8 million project, implemented by ITC and UNIDO, provided technical assistance to the national quality infrastructure and to the food, beverages, spices and concentrates sectors .
Through this project, EDB was supported in its Cinnamon IG registration application process.