CHIANG RAI – Doi Tung and Doi Chang Coffee have won the European Union’s geographical indication certificate, after campaigning more than five years.
Commerce Minister Chatchai Sarikulya said yesterday that after the EU certifies Doi Tung and Doi Chang coffee, it will add value to the products in the EU and the world market. Thai farmers and traders will enjoy higher income and a good reputation for Thai coffee.
The two products are Thailand’s second to win recognition after Hom Mali Thung Kula Ronghai jasmine rice two years ago.
The EU’s decision was published in its official journal on Tuesday and will go into effect on August 3.
A geographical indication is a name or sign used on certain products that corresponds to a specific geographical location or origin, such as a town, province, region or country.
The use of GI may act as a certification that the product possesses certain qualities, is made according to traditional methods or enjoys a certain reputation, due to its geographical origin.
Doi Chang and Doi Tung are two well-known coffee varieties made from beans cultivated in the hills of Chiang Rai.
As Doi Tung is grown at higher hills about 800-1,200 meters above sea level, its beans have a unique flavor and taste.
Doi Chang comes only from Doi Wawee, which is located 1,000-1,700 meters above sea level.
This Arabica has a sweet aroma and honey-like taste.
Thailand had sought GI certification for these two coffee varieties since May 2010.
They will be able to use the GI certificate on their products to guarantee quality and attract consumers, who are ready to pay more for certain products.
According to the Intellectual Property Department, Thailand exported 700 tonnes of coffee worth US$3.6 billion to the world market last year.
About 10 per cent or $374 million went to the EU market.
About 400 tonnes of Doi Chang are shipped to Canada, the United Kingdom, Italy, Malaysia, South Korea and Australia each year, while Doi Tung is normally sold to Japan.