Who are the Trappists?
The Order of Cistercians of Strict Observance (OCSO) is a Roman Catholic religious order of cloistered, contemplative monks or nuns who follow the Rule of St. Benedict. The order was formed in 1664 at the La Trappe Abbey in Normandy, France as a reform movement in response to the relaxation of monastic practices within the Cistercian order. The Trappists officially broke away from the Cistercian order in 1892 to form an independent monastic order with the approval of the pope. Trappists strictly abide by the concept of “ora et labora” (prayer and work) as outlined in Chapter 48 of The Rule of St. Benedict, which states “for then are they monks in truth, if they live by the work of their hands.” The life of a Trappist monk consists of contemplative prayer, community liturgy, and manual labor. Simple living is one of the key hallmarks of monastic life.
What is an “Authentic Trappist Product”?
The International Trappist Association (ITA) is an organization comprised of 20 monasteries of the Order of Cistercians of Strict Observance (OCSO), commonly referred to as “Trappists” (monks) and “Trappistines” (nuns). The brothers and sisters of these monastic orders produce various handmade products which provide for their own living expenses and also enable them to help others in need.
The ITA was established in 1997 and the “Authentic Trappist Product” label was created to ensure the consumer of the origin and authenticity of Trappist products, especially in the beer market where a considerable number of brands portray themselves using a “religious” image even though the products don’t come from a monastery. The ATP label guarantees the monastic origin of the products and ensures the products measure up to the quality and traditional standards rooted in the monastic life of a real Trappist community. These twenty communities alone can submit an application for the right to use the collective figurative ATP trademark label for their monastery’s products.
On the other hand, all products produced by the 175 Trappist monasteries globally may be called TRAPPIST products. The name TRAPPIST is a designation of origin. Apart from Trappist monasteries, no one may appropriate to himself the right to use this name for any product whatsoever.
What is Trappist Beer?
A “Trappist” beer must satisfy a number of stringent criteria in order to attain the ATP logo and truly bear the Trappist name. According to the rules outlined by the ITA:
The beer must be brewed within the walls of a Trappist monastery, either by the monks themselves or under their supervision.
The brewery must be of secondary importance within the monastery and it should witness to the business practices proper to a monastic way of life
The brewery is not intended to be a profit-making venture. The income covers the living expenses of the monks and the maintenance of the buildings and grounds. Whatever remains is donated to charity for social work and to help persons in need.
Trappist breweries strictly comply with all health and safety standards as well as consumer information standards. Their advertising and communication is marked by honesty, soberness and a modesty proper to the religious setting in which the beer is brewed.
There are currently 11 Trappist monasteries that carry the ATP logo on their beers. These include:
Netherlands: La Trappe, Zundert
Italy: Tre Fontane
ATP-label application procedure
Only members of the International Trappist Association are able to submit an application for the right to use the “AUTHENTIC TRAPPIST PRODUCT” logo for a product. After the application has been received, the chairman and the members of the Board of Directors of the ITA will begin an evaluation procedure. This can take several months. The procedure includes assembling an extensive dossier, an on-site visit to check the production regulations and the quality demands as set by the ITA, and of course, a tasting of the products concerned. At the end of the procedure, the Board of Directors of the ITA will decide whether or not to grant the right to use the “AUTHENTIC TRAPPIST PRODUCT” logo for the products concerned. This ATP license is valid for five years. The monastery then commits itself to compliance with all the conditions expressed in the Regulation of Internal Order of the ITA.
1997年，六家比利時、一家荷蘭和一家德國的特拉普會修道院為了避免”Trappist “名稱被濫用，成立了國際特拉普斯特聯盟(ITA)，並製訂了ITA標誌、並將此標誌給予生產過程合乎聯盟生產規範的產品。於是經過ITA所認證過的產品都會有它們的六角形Authentic Trappist Product標誌，這是為了要確保消費者在購買時能清楚知道他們所購買的產品是經過認證，而非只是現今啤酒市場中令人眼花撩亂的「修道院啤酒」。
荷蘭: La Trappe, Zundert
義大利: Tre Fontane