On 26 February 2008, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) dismissed the European Commission’s action against Germany but confirmed that only cheese bearing the Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) “Parmigiano Reggiano” can be sold under the name “Parmesan”. Products registered as a PDO benefit from protection against any misuse, imitation or evocation of the products named. The European Commission had requested that the ECJ declare that Germany had failed in its duty to protect the registered PDO “Parmigiano Reggiano” by allowing products to be labelled “Parmesan”, even though they did not meet the requirements of the PDO. The ECJ dismissed the action on the grounds that: (i) EU rules do not oblige Member State authorities, other than that of the Member State from which the PDO originates, to take on their own initiative the measures necessary to penalise PDO infringements; and (ii) the Commission had failed to prove that Germany had not put in place any other measures to ensure the effective protection of the PDO. The ECJ did however confirm in its judgment that given the phonetic and visual similarity between the names in question and the appearance of the products, use of the name “Parmesan” was an evocation of the PDO “Parmigiano Reggiano”.