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Document 52011XC0625(04)

Publication of an application pursuant to Article 6(2) of Council Regulation (EC) No 510/2006 on the protection of geographical indications and designations of origin for agricultural products and foodstuffs

OJ C 185, 25.6.2011, p. 14–17 (BG, ES, CS, DA, DE, ET, EL, EN, FR, IT, LV, LT, HU, MT, NL, PL, PT, RO, SK, SL, FI, SV)



Official Journal of the European Union

C 185/14

Publication of an application pursuant to Article 6(2) of Council Regulation (EC) No 510/2006 on the protection of geographical indications and designations of origin for agricultural products and foodstuffs

2011/C 185/06

This publication confers the right to object to the application pursuant to Article 7 of Council Regulation (EC) No 510/2006 (1). Statements of objection must reach the Commission within six months from the date of this publication.




EC No: SL-PDO-0005-0422-29.10.2004

PDO ( X ) PGI ( )

This summary sets out the main elements of the product specification for information purposes.

1.   Responsible department in the Member State:


Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food


Dunajska cesta 22

SI-1000 Ljubljana



+386 14789109


+386 14789055


2.   Applicant:


Sirarsko društvo Tolminc (Tolminc cheese association)


Rutarjeva 35

SI-5220 Tolmin



+386 53891075




Producers/processors ( X ) Other ( )

3.   Type of product:

Class 1.3.


4.   Specification:

(summary of requirements under Article 4(2) of Regulation (EC) No 510/2006)

4.1.   Name:


4.2.   Description:

‘Tolminc’ is classified as a hard, full-fat cheese. The raw material for the production of ‘Tolminc’ is raw or thermised cow’s milk produced within the defined geographical area.

Form and dimensions: a 3,5-5 kg round wheel of diameter 23-27 cm and height 8-9 cm.

External appearance: the rind of the cheese is smooth and straw-coloured.

Cross-section: the interior of the cheese is flexible, yellow in colour, with occasional lentil- or pea-sized eyes.

Taste and smell: the smell is distinctive and free from foreign odours, and the taste sweet and piquant.

Chemical composition: at least 60 % dry matter and at least 45 % fat by weight in dry matter.

The cheese must mature for at least 60 days.

4.3.   Geographical area:

The production of milk and the manufacture of ‘Tolminc’ take place in the Zgornje Posočje area, encompassing the municipalities of Kobarid, Tolmin and Bovec.

The geographical area is delimited on the western side by the Italian border and elsewhere by the outer limits of the settlements running from Kamno to Log pod Mangartom, as follows: Kamno, Volče, Čiginj, Volčanski Ruti, Sela pri Volčah, Gorenji Log, Tolminski Lom, Dolgi Laz, Kanalski Lom, Grudnica, Slap ob Idrijci, Dolenja Trebuša, Gorenja Trebuša, Stopnik, Daber, Gorski Vrh, Bukovski Vrh, Grahovo ob Bači, Hudajužna, Porezen, Podbrdo, Petrovo Brdo, Bača pri Podbrdu, Kal, Stržišče, Rut, Grant, Knežke Ravne, Ljubinj, Tolminske Ravne, Čadrg, Krn, Soča, Trenta, Log pod Mangartom.

The settlements mentioned are themselves situated within the defined geographical area.

4.4.   Proof of origin:

The following procedures or measures are conducted in order to guarantee the traceability of ‘Tolminc’.

Milk production: The milk must be produced in the defined geographical area. The keeping of a herd book ensures that the breed composition of the herd is appropriate. Farms also keep records of feed rations and the purchase of feedingstuffs or feed materials.

Collection of milk: The milk intended for the production of ‘Tolminc’ must be collected and stored separately from other milk. Records are kept of the quantities of milk purchased per day, with a breakdown by farm.

Manufacture of dairy products: The producers of ‘Tolminc’ keep records of the quantities of milk processed per day and of the quantities of cheese produced per day by batch. A batch means the quantity of cheese that is made from a single coagulation of milk. If only one batch of cheese was produced on a given day, the production date of the cheese also constitutes the batch designation.

Ripening of the cheese: In order to ensure that each batch of cheese ripens for at least 60 days, producers keep records of the ripening of cheese. The production date of the cheese is also the date on which the ripening of the cheese starts.

4.5.   Method of production:

‘Tolminc’ is made from raw or thermised (57-68 °C) cow’s milk produced in the defined geographical area. At least 80 % of the milk for the production of ‘Tolminc’ must be obtained from cows of the brown breed. The cows are fed with bulk fodder (pasture, hay, silage) from the geographical area, which must account for at least 75 % of the dry matter of the daily ration.

In order to produce ‘Tolminc’, use is made of matured milk to which fresh milk may be added before coagulation. The ripening of milk lasts for at least 12 hours; this develops the autochthonous microflora and ensures that the milk has an appropriate level of acidity. In order to speed up fermentation, it is permitted to use home-made starter cultures (the ripening of a small quantity of milk at quite a high temperature for at least 12 hours) or selected cultures. The addition of rennet is followed by coagulation of the milk, which lasts 25-35 minutes at a temperature of between 32 °C and 34 °C. Manipulating the coagulum accelerates the process of whey extraction and enables curd grains of an appropriate size to be produced. In the first phase, the hard coagulum is cut up suitably, first into large squares. Next, the curd grain is broken down into hazelnut-sized pieces. The correct curd grain consistency is obtained by heating and drying. The curd grain is heated to 44-48 °C and then dried, with constant stirring, until the appropriate consistency is obtained. The formation of the cheese and the separation of the curd from the whey may be done in different ways depending on the possibilities and the technical equipment available to individual dairies. Pressing of the cheese takes 6 to 12 hours in appropriately heated premises. Turning the cheese over during pressing is intended to speed up the extraction of whey, distribute the water contained in the cheese evenly and give the cheese a better shape. ‘Tolminc’ is salted in brine for between 24 and 48 hours.

After salting, each wheel is marked with the date of the start of the maturing of the cheese or the batch designation. ‘Tolminc’ must mature for at least two months. It is very important that the cheese is looked after (turned, wiped, cleaned) while maturing.

4.6.   Link:

History and tradition of cheese-making in the geographical area

The first records mentioning ‘Tolminc cheese’ date back to the 13th century, when it was mentioned as a means of payment for the taxes due to the lord of the land of the time. It first appeared with the name ‘Formaggio di Tolmino — Tolminski sir’ (cheese from Tolmin) in 1756 on a price list for cheese in the town of Udine.

Great contributions to the quality of ‘Tolminc’ were made by various master cheese-makers, who as far back as the late 19th century, under the auspices of the Farm Association in Gorica, came to the Tolmin area and helped the locals solve their cheese-making problems. It was on the Razor mountain pasture under the leadership of Thomas Hitz from Switzerland that hard cheeses were produced in 1886. ‘Tolminc’ has developed over centuries and has thus become part of the tradition and culture of the people who have always produced it and who still produce it.

‘Tolminc’ has a very long and rich tradition, which goes hand in hand with the beginnings of pasturing in high-mountain pastures. In the mountain pastureland, cattle are circulated seasonally between the valley and the high-mountain pastures, a movement which established the basis of the feeding methods. This economic cycle began every year with the movement of cattle from the valley villages to the ‘lower’ or hay field slopes. At the end of June, the cattle were driven onto the high mountains, where they were grazed and cheese was made until the beginning of September, when the return to the lower slopes began. The cattle remained here until the first snows. The aforementioned economic cycle is still today the standard practice of cattle farmers in Zgornje Posočje.

Natural conditions

Zgornje Posočje stands at something of a meeting point between the influences of the Mediterranean and the Alpine climates. It is precisely for this reason that Zgornje Posočje has specific natural conditions, which through the bulk fodder produced in the geographical area are reflected in the milk and, thereafter, in the final product after processing.

Zgornje Posočje is the area with the highest rainfall in Slovenia, the main reason for which is the rise of humid air arriving over Slovenia from the Mediterranean Sea at the relatively high mountainous barrier formed by the western Julian Alps. The openness of the space along the Soča river valley towards the Mediterranean Sea further guarantees the influence of the sea. In Tolmin, the average annual air temperature is around 11 °C, the average temperature in January is around 1 °C and in July over 18 °C.

The warmer sub-Mediterranean climate has a major influence on the composition of the vegetation, giving the Alpine vegetation in the Posočje area a particular appearance. The distinctive characteristics of the vegetation on account of the sub-Mediterranean climate are also evident in the steep Alpine cliffs, which, unlike those of the Gorenjska area, are overgrown and, in short, quite special and with a powerful scent of the wild. The flora of the mountain and sub-Alpine meadows of Zgornje Posočje is extremely rich and varied. The reasons for this diversity of species lie in the recent geological past (this position on the southern edge of the ice-age ice cover), the composition of the stone (limestone or dolomite, occasionally mixed with marl, claystone and chert) and the climate (humid, relatively warm mountain climate). The most distinctive feature of the local vegetation is the occurrence of species unique to the area. Some of the grasslands (pastures, hay fields, sub-Alpine and Alpine meadows) of Zgornje Posočje are also characterised by the presence of certain rare species. Thanks to the influence of the sub-Mediterranean climate, more temperate species also flourish in the high mountain hay fields.

The rich microflora also plays an important role in the production of ‘Tolminc’. Thanks to the ripening of the raw milk or the use of home-made starter cultures, the environment makes its mark on the cheese, and the beneficial autochthonous microflora hampers the development of harmful microorganisms.

4.7.   Inspection body:


Bureau Veritas d.o.o.


Linhartova cesta 49a

SI-1000 Ljubljana



+386 14757600


+386 14747601


4.8.   Labelling:

Cheeses which meet all the requirements of the specification are marked with the name of the producer, the ‘Tolminc’ name and logo (reproduced below), the corresponding EU mark and the national quality symbol. The labelling must also state whether the cheese was produced from raw or thermised milk.

Producers may place additional labelling on the cheese if it was matured for more than two months, the cows were not fed silage or the cheese was produced in a mountain dairy.


(1)  OJ L 93, 31.3.2006, p. 12.