Spreewälder Gurken (Spreewald cucumber)
G.g.A. Spreewälder Gurken are fresh cucumbers (gherkins) grown in the Spreewald area of Germany by integrated production methods in accordance with the Brandenburg Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Forestry’s guidelines of 18 May 1995 on aid for the introduction of integrated production of fruit and vegetables. The processed product consists primarily (i.e. over 70%) of gherkins grown in the Spreewald area by integrated production methods in accordance with the above guidelines, to which fresh onions, fresh dill, herbs or horseradish are added to obtain the desired flavour. Bottled gherkins in jars with a nominal value of up to 1,700 ml are sweetened with sucrose only. The total acidity (in terms of acetic acid) of fermentation vinegar in the final product is less than 1%. Salzdillgurken (“salteddill” or sour gherkins) contain a maximum 3% table salt.
Geographical area: In view of the soil conditions and other climatic factors, the special characteristics of the fresh product and the traditional recipes and processing methods used, the geographical area is restricted to the Spreewald economic region. This extends, to the north, along the border of the
Proof of origin: The fresh gherkins come exclusively from growing areas in the Spreewald region. These are processed exclusively in establishments located within the Spreewald region constantly monitored by the Brandenburg Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Forestry.
Method of production: Any processing follows traditional recipes that have been handed down from generation to generation with traditional production and preservation processes to obtain the various flavours.
Link: The unique soil structure in the Spreewald economic region (basically peat with some clay and fine silt embedded, constant relatively high moisture content) and its special microclimate provides favourable conditions for growing gherkins. For centuries farms in this area have been producing and selling fresh gherkins or marketing processed gherkins bottled in accordance with traditional recipes. “Spreewälder Gurken” have their own distinctive flavour which identifies them beyond all doubt as coming from the Spreewald region and accounts for the good perception consumers have of them. Therefore processing in the Spreewald area is particularly important, as this guarantees that traditional preservation and processing methods are used. The gherkin growers and processors in the Spreewald area follow processing guidelines which ensure quality and which are monitored by independent inspectors.
The G.g.A. Spreewälder Gurken, if fresh, can be preserved in the refrigerator on the lower part; if pickled, they should be preserved in a cool place, and once the jar is opened, in the refrigerator. These cucumbers are consumed both fresh and pickled; they are particularly suitable to accompany meat and cheese dishes.
Reference: The European Commission