Geographical indications

  • All the cultivation, elaboration, packing, and certification processes of the product are supervised by the Regulatory Board, which has implemented its own quality system according to the European Union Standard 45011.

    The implemented certification system is based on:


    1. INSPECTIONS

    • At field level

      They are aimed at guaranteeing the origin of the product. This is the purpose of the inspection of 25% of the plots which are renewed and of 100% of the new ones.
    • At storing level

      The origin of the raw material is checked, as the traceability along the manipulation line; the finished product's quality is examined and the correct assignment of the certification is monitored.
    • At industrial level

      The origin of the raw material is checked, as the traceability and controls along the manufacturing line, and the correct assignment of the certification is monitored. Besides, some random samples are taken for their posterior analysis in the lab.

    2. QUALITY CONTROL OF THE FINAL PRODUCT

    • Physical and chemical analysis

      They make sure that the canned asparagus meets the quality rule regarding Canned Vegetables. These analyses are carried out by the National Centre for Food Technology and Safety, accredited by ENAC to carry out such analyses.
    • Sensory analysis

      They establish the attributes which better describe the product and the best intensity of each of them. The parameters that are taken into account are:
    • Opening of the can or jar: among others, the characteristic smell, the uniformity of length and thickness of all the asparagus, and the cloudiness of the canning liquid are measured.
    • Form, colour, texture, and flavour: these analysis are carried out by the tasting panel of the Natural Science Department of the Public University of Navarre, accredited by ENAC to carry them out.
  • To belong to the Protected Geographical Indication “Espárrago de Navarra”, it is necessary to comply with some requirements included in the Regulations of the Protected Geographical Indication. According to these Regulations, the protected asparagus will need to be obtained from turions or stems of the asparagus plant Asparagus officinalis, L, of the varieties authorised by such Regulations. The Indication includes asparagus destined for consumption both as a fresh vegetable and canned.

    The following can be inscribed into the Protected Geographical Indication “Espárrago de Navarra” registers:

    • The asparagus plantations located in the geographical production area.
    • The traders of fresh asparagus located in the geographical production area.
    • The canning industries located in the geographical production area.
  • The Regulatory Board is the government body of the Protected Geographical Indication, democratically elected and made up by members both from the productive area and the manufacturing section, and by representatives from the corresponding Government Department. At the same time, it has a secretary who has been chosen by the Board.

    The main functions of the Regulatory Board are:

    • to defend the Protected Geographical Indication “Espárrago de Navarra”.
    • to check on the observance of its rules.
    • to promote and control the quality of its products.
    • to promote the asparagus so as to expand its market areas.

     

    Download the Regulations for this Designation of Origin

  • The Regulations on the Specific Designation of the Espárrago de Navarra were approved by an Order from the Department of Agriculture, Livestock, and Forestry of the Government of Navarre, on 6th October, 1986. Afterwards, on 3rd March, 1987, it was ratified by the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

    The high socio-economic relevance of the cultivation of the asparagus during the 80s was, at the beginning of the procedures for the achievement of this Designation of Origin, and it constituted the base for the development of the canning industry located in the Ebro valley.

    This industrial boom led to the specialisation of the production and manufacturing of the product, becoming true in this way the Specific Guarantee and its Regulatory Board with the aim of guaranteeing and defending the Espárrago de Navarra against the competence of other production areas.

    From the beginning, we thought that the Designation should include areas from Navarre, La Rioja and Aragon Navarre, La Rioja and Aragon1993, when the entrance of some villages belonging to the autonomous regions of Aragon and La Rioja was approved. Nowadays, there are within this Designation of Origin more than 176 villages from Navarre (without including Bardenas), 43 villages from Aragon, and 38 from La Rioja.

    Finally, in 2003 (Navarre Order APA/2926/2003) of 8th October (BOE 22 October 2003, Nº 253/2003) the Regulations are again modified to extend the production area and to modify the authorised varieties. Besides this, the European Union rules on this issue were adopted and the Specific Designation was inscribed as A Protected Geographical Indication into the European Register by Standard (CE) Nº 1107/96 of the European Commission of 12th June.


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