Arla in 2011 was selling its Apetina brand as 'feta in Japan. Photo: Karl Baron/Flickr
“The agriculture minister has (approved) the activation of European Commission legal action against Denmark for violating protected designation of origin (regulations),” the ministry said in a statement.
Feta is an “emblematic” Greek product, the ministry said, adding that Denmark had “refused to cooperate” with EU regulations.
It has also allowed Danish producers to manufacture “imitation feta” and to export “imitation EU cheeses” to non-EU countries, Athens said.
Feta cheese counts among a number of region-specific foods and beverages which European countries are fighting to maintain their appellation of origin.
In 2005, the European Court of Justice struck down an appeal from Germany and Denmark — backed by France and Britain — over the right of their producers to keep using the feta name for their white, brine-soaked cheeses.