We talked before about Scottish whisky. An industry with a turnover of billions. And therefore, also a target of counterfeiting.
But how fight against this counterfeit? Against bottles mentioning Scottish Whisky while the drink is brewed next door? Trademark protects individual trademarks and also collective trademarks, but almost never indications of origin.
But if you group as an industry and do a lot of lobbying, you can get the origin of a particular product protected as a geographical indication. Examples in the European Union are rooibos, feta, champagne and Gouda cheese.
Also outside the European Union, the protection of geographical names is a vital element in fighting the counterfeit. Fortunately for the Scotch Whisky Association, the number of countries has been growing since 2005, even tripled. Recently many Western African countries have been added, protection is obtained in the OAPI countries, which include Senegal, Mali and Ivory Coast.
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“Trademark protection gives freedom to do business.”