European definition could settle dispute over ‘Tokaji’


Mandatory description of European wine products - a component of the EU's wine reform - could settle a long dispute between Hungary and Slovakia over the use of the "Tokaji" brand, business daily Napi Gazdaság said on Wednesday.

Under the European reform, Hungary has to submit descriptions of wines produced in the country's traditional wine-growing regions to the European Commission until the end of this year.

If the Commission approves Hungary's definition of Tokaj wine, Slovakia's claim to apply the brand to wines produced on the Slovak side of the hills could become void, the paper said. In that case Slovak wines could only be labeled "Tokaji" if producers adopted the EU-approved Hungarian definition and production requirements for the world-famous sweet beverage, the paper added.

Hungary's Tokaj region is adjacent to the Slovak border, and though a small area which traditionally belonged to the Tokaj wine region is now in Slovakia, the EU ruled that Hungary has the sole right to the "Tokaji" name for its famous wines.

Contrary to the European ruling, however, Slovakia had some of its wines registered in the official wine registry of the EU as "Tokaji".


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