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Parmigiano Reggiano Launches Awareness Campaign in the GCC

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Education UAE | Food | Parmigiano Reggiano Launches Awareness Campaign

It is simply not possible to claim that schools are ‘all the same’. The same can be said of cheese too, with the Parmigiano Reggiano Consortium having launched a large-scale awareness campaign in Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Kuwait. The initiative is part of a multi-year investment plan that aims at developing the market potential in the Gulf region for Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.

The Consortium’s strategy aims at educating Arab consumers on the specific characteristics of Parmigiano Reggiano, a cheese that stands out for its selection of the best and 100% natural ingredients and for using the same recipe for 1,000 years.

A survey carried out by Hirux/Nielsen highlighted that consumers in the GCC countries mistakenly identify Parmigiano Reggiano with generic Parmesan. Indeed, Parmigiano Reggiano accounts for only 30% of the sales of hard cheese in GCC, whereas Parmesan accounts for the remaining 70%.

The campaign comprises a TV commercial, to be aired in Kuwait, UAE, and KSA, that tries to shed light on the difference between Parmigiano Reggiano and the generic ‘Parmesan’ cheese. According to Fabrizio Raimondi, press officer for Parmigiano Reggiano Consortium: “Many cheese makers produce high-quality cheeses that are inspired by Parmigiano Reggiano and they call them Parmesan. Parmigiano Reggiano has to be made using artisan and natural methods that are established by strict regulations and specifications, which set forth specific production procedures, a special diet for cows, and rules for using the hot-iron mark.

“The Production Standard is registered with the European Union, because Parmigiano Reggiano is a cheese with Protected Designation of Origin (PDO), i.e. a product that, based on its distinctive characteristics and its tie to the area of origin, is safeguarded by a system provided by the EU to protect consumers and producers alike. To bear the designation ‘Parmigiano Reggiano PDO’, the cheese has to be produced in the area of origin (which includes the provinces of Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Mantua to the right of the Po River, and Bologna to the left of the Reno River – a surface of approximately 10,000 km2). Regular controls are carried out on the milk used in the process to ensure the high quality and the presence of special characteristics, which allow Parmigiano Reggiano to be completely without additives or preservatives.

“The purpose of our campaign is to educate people about the importance of choosing authentic Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.”