What do tequila, mezcal, talavera and habanero peppers have in common? They’re not only distinctly Mexican products but they enjoy designation of origin (PDO) to promote and protect them as quality products.
They are among 14 that enjoy the designation, which provides some legal protection to the use of their name and sets geographic limits on the areas where they may be produced.
Three are related to arts and handcrafts; the rest are food and drink.
Here is the full list:
Close to 200 municipalities in five states are allowed to use Agave tequilana, or blue agave, to produce the staple Mexican spirit. Jalisco is the state most closely associated with the culture of tequila, and its 125 municipalities are located within the designation of origin.
Not as commonly known is the fact that eight Nayarit municipalities, seven in Guanajuato, 11 in Tamaulipas and 30 in Michoacán also produce world-class tequila.
This designation of origin was granted to the wooden handicrafts produced in the Guerrero municipality of Olinalá, all made with wood from the linaloe (Bursera linaloe) shrub.
Although produced almost wherever agave plants are found, only the mezcal made in the states of Durango, Guanajuato, Guerrero, Michoacán, Oaxaca, San Luis Potosí, Tamaulipas and Zacatecas has the designation of origin.
The states of Puebla and Morelos are vying to be included on the list.
Talavera pottery is made in the states of Puebla and Tlaxcala in a tradition that goes back 500 years. The designation of origin is granted to the pottery that is produced by following strict stipulations in the Tlaxcala municipality of San Pablo del Monte and in the municipalities of Atlixco, Puebla, Cholula and Tecali de Herrera, in Puebla.
Renowned worldwide for its hardness, amber mined in Chiapas is also found in a wide variety of colors. Officially recognized with a designation of origin in 2000, most of the Chiapas amber is extracted in the municipality of Simojovel.
Third in a list that includes five distilled alcoholic beverages, charanda can be described as similar to rum. Only the sugar cane distilled in 16 municipalities of Michoacán can be called charanda, as a combination of traditional sugar cane plantations and spring waters give it unique characteristics.
Sotol is produced in the northern states of Chihuahua, Coahuila and Durango from a plant known as sotol or sereque (Dasylirion wheeleri). The three states have held the designation of origin since 2002.
Also known as young, baby, yellow, honey, Adaulfo, Adolfo or champagne mango, this cultivar is produced in the Soconusco region of Chiapas. Characterized by firm, sweet pulp, the designation of origin was granted to 13 Chiapas municipalities that are known as the Mango Ataulfo region.
Chiapas and Veracruz coffee
Coffee produced in both states was granted designation of origin in 2002. Unique geographic and climate characteristics give the coffee of Chiapas and Veracruz with singular properties that stimulate the senses.
Bacanora is an artisanal alcoholic beverage produced from distilled agave plants in Sonora. Thirty-five producing municipalities have been acknowledged since 2000 with the official recognition.
The designation of origin protects the mature fruit of the vanilla orchid (Vanilla planifolia) and several subspecies. Thirty-nine municipalities in Puebla and Veracruz are included in this official recognition.
Habaneros (Capsicum chinense) are a variety of chile pepper considered to be very hot. The official recognition granted to habanero pepper produced in the Yucatán peninsula not only protects the chile itself, but all byproducts.
This designation of origin covers several cultivars of rice produced in the state of Morelos and its prepared versions.
Source: El Universal (sp)