Logo 468x60

Döner earns EU recognition: A traditional delight from Türkiye

ISTANBUL (AA): Türkiye’s application to the European Union (EU) for the registration of döner, one of the foremost flavors associated with Turkish cuisine, as a “traditional food,” has been announced and published in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU).

The announcement stated that döner is prepared by thinly slicing beef, lamb or chicken and then skewering it horizontally onto a spit, where it rotates vertically around its axis and is cooked over fire. It also mentioned that döner can be made using beef or lamb meat, ground beef or lamb, or their mixtures, as well as chicken meat.

Prior to cooking, the thinly sliced meat is seasoned with a blend of yogurt or milk, pepper or tomato puree, salt, herbs and spices. During skewering, horizontal slices of fat are strategically layered between the meat slices.

The announcement indicated that döner has been spreading from Istanbul to various cities across the Ottoman territories since the early 1800s, where it has been cooked and sold in both restaurants and inns. Moreover, it was noted that according to Takiyüddin’s manuscripts, the tradition of vertically cooking döner can be traced back to as early as 1546.

The announcement highlighted the cultural significance of döner during the significant migration of Turks to Europe, particularly Germany, from 1962 to 1979. Its name and production method were spread across Germany and other European countries without alteration. Additionally, it noted döner’s prominence as a leading street food in Europe, attributing its name to the verb “dönmek” (to rotate), reflecting the traditional cooking method of the dish.

Additionally, it was mentioned that “döner kebab” is categorized according to the shape of the meat slices, which can include leaf-shaped, minced and mixed varieties. Furthermore, it emphasized that döner kebab should not include non-animal proteins, starch or soy products.

With the announcement published in the Official Journal of the EU (OJEU), the first step towards registering döner has been taken. Following the conclusion of the 3-month objection period, döner will be formally registered, making it the first traditional product name from Türkiye to receive registration in the EU.