Scottish kiltmakers hold summit

Sept. 24, 2008 at 1:57 PM

PERTH, Scotland, Sept. 24 (UPI) -- Scottish kiltmakers hope to protect themselves and their national traditions from cheap imports with a rigid definition of what makes a kilt.

The manufacturers are holding their own summit in the city of Perth, The Telegraph reports. The agenda includes pattern, materials and tartans, the plaid patterns that identify Scottish clans.

One goal is to get legal status for the European Union. Alyn Smith, a Scottish National Party member who sits in the European Parliament, called the summit "music to my ears."

"For too long now we have seen cheap, poorly made, foreign knock-offs being passed off as kilts and it annoys me intensely. The things are not fit to be dishcloths," Smith said. "They undermine a market built on quality materials and first class tailoring. Scotland's tartan industry as a whole contributes some 4,000 jobs and 350 million pounds ($700 million) to the economy so it is worth protecting."

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