Netherlands and Belgium to gain cross-border PDO

An appellation that span both the Netherlands and Belgium is set to become the first in either country to receive protected status,  with Dutch and Belgian wine recognised by the European Union for the first time.

Wijngoed Thorn is one of 10 vineyards that will benefit from the PDO

A group of winemakers in the Maasvallei Limburg, which covers an area of 60 square miles either side of the north European Maas river, have rallied together to successfully apply for a Protected Designation Origin (PDO) from the EU Commission.

Importantly, the PDO will be a cross-border appellation, with the right bank being Dutch and the left bank Belgian.

The application for PDO status was submitted to the EU Commission in 2011 by Harry Vorselen, of Wijngoed Thorn (Dutch), and Karel Henckens from Aldeneyck (Belgian), and approved by the EU Commission in August of this year.

It is expected to be formally introduced this month, and will relate to food and drink “produced, processed and prepared in a given geographical area, using recognised know-how”, according to the EU.

Ten vineyards on the Belgian side of the Maasvallei Limburg area will have the right to bear PDO status if the region, while there is currently only one estate within the appellation’s Dutch side.

With regards to wine, it will cover red and white wines produced using grapes including Acolon, Pinot Noir, Chardonmay, Auxerrois, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, Dornfelder and Gewurztraminer.

Maasvallei Limburg wine will join 15 Dutch products on the PDO list, alongside edam and gouda cheeses, Brabante asparagus and the Opperdoezer Round potato.

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