The Protected Appellations of Origin are issued from a European Regulation from 1992 aiming to protect all AOC Europe wide in keeping their specifications to the other members of the EU, especially from a geographical point of view. The AOP are made to link the AOC to the ground where they come from.
Of course, all cheese AOC are also AOP.
The law controlling the principle of AOC was voted in France in 1919.
The first cheese AOC in France was issued from a law dated July 1925. The Roquefort.
In 1935 a law established the characteristics of cheeses (Composition, fat & milk). In 1941 dry matter and weight were regulated. In 1947 and ever since, each cheese applying to the appellation determinates specifications from the breeder to the distributor, protecting consequently those who invested in this approach.