Dundee cake could soon join the likes of Champagne and Stilton in gaining special EU protection as the Scottish government prepares to make an official application.
Richard Lochhead, Scottish government rural affairs secretary, is expected to announce the news later this morning at the Dundee Flower and Food Festival.
The history of Dundee cake – which comprises a fruit cake decorated with whole, blanched almonds – can be traced back to 18th-century food heroine Janet Keiller (1757-1825?), who is also credited with inventing marmalade.
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The application currently outlines the ingredients and volumes of them that must be used and specifies that the cake must be mixed, baked and decorated with almonds within the Dundee postcode area DD1 to DD8.
The Scottish government and Scotland’s Rural College have been working with producers and experts at the University of Abertay Dundee on an application for PGI (protected geographical indication) status.
Although Dundee cake was known all over the world, it was made in a number of locations and produced to various quality levels, said Martin Goodfellow, of Dundee baker Goodfellow and Steven, who provided input into the application. “It is a significant part of our heritage and it is important that the cake is rightfully associated with the city in which it originated and its quality levels maintained.”
Scotland was world famous for its wonderful food and drink and people wanted to know they were buying the “real deal”, said Lochhead. “Achieving PGI status for Dundee cake will ensure that consumers at home and abroad have a 100% guarantee of the product’s authenticity.”
Once the application is finalised, it will be put to national consultation before being forwarded to Defra, which is responsible for submitting applications from the UK to the EU.
Scotch beef and Stornoway Black Pudding are Scottish foods that already hold a PGI under the EU scheme.
Other Dundee bakers who have been involved in agreeing a specification include Alan Clark of Clarks, Mark Robb of JM Bakery and Iain Murray of Baker Trade of Dundee.
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