Everyone should have the right to use common names in marketing well-known, favorite foods.
But that right is under threat. We oppose attempts to monopolize generic names, and seek to foster the adoption of an appropriate, international model for protecting both legitimate geographical indications (GIs) and generic food names.
Giorgio Linguanti, That’s Amore Cheese
“Yes, these cheeses originated in my home country of Italy, but we proudly make them here in Australia according to those traditions, and spread the love for these cheeses – and the names of these cheeses – here.” Read more…
Fostering Workable GI Guidelines
“Our ultimate goal is to foster the adoption of model GI guidelines throughout the world, which we think is achievable and can be workable for specialty producers.”
Congressional leaders overseeing trade and intellectual property issues today sent a letter to the Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) expressing “serious concern” about the lack of participation in a fast-moving process to adopt sweeping revisions to a global system for registering protected food names, or geographical indications (GIs). The Consortium for […]Read More »
(Brussels, Belgium) The U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC), an active member of the international Consortium for Common Food Names (CCFN), today briefed U.S. and EU negotiators on deep-set concerns with the EU’s current approach to protections for geographical indications (GIs). The presentation was made during the stakeholder briefings here in conjunction with this week’s U.S.-EU […]Read More »
The Consortium for Common Food Names (CCFN) is voicing its objections to a plan by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) to allow approval of a controversial intellectual property (IP) agreement to take place behind closed doors, without the full participation by all WIPO members who may be impacted by the decision. CCFN is urging WIPO members to protest in advance of – and during – a critical meeting this month, and to request that all WIPO members be permitted to participate fully in an upcoming diplomatic conference.
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WIPO Members Warned of Unintended Consequences to International Food Trade in Advance of Meeting this Month…
Representatives of the Consortium for Common Food Names (CCFN) were in Geneva last week for the 2014 World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) General Assembly Meeting, voicing concern about current proposals to expand the Lisbon Agreement, an international system for geographical indications (GIs) that threatens to severely impede the global use of common names for many cheeses, meats, beverages and other foods.Read More »
South Africa appears to be bypassing intellectual property evaluation to allow a substantial list of GIs protection within South Africa as part of the nation’s economic partnership agreement with the EU, concluded July 22. The list includes such common names as “feta”, “asiago”, “fontina” and “gorgonzola”. CCFN sent a letter to South African Ambassador Rasool expressing concern about the agreement.Read More »
Regional Report: CCFN continues to monitor for new threats and to take action as needed in various regions:
Japan is proceeding with its GI regulation implementation; CCFN filed comments on the country's draft regulations in March, stressing the importance of transparency, clarity and maintaining open competition from a variety of Japan's trading partners.
In Vietnam, CCFN filed comments in late December in response to a large list of protected GIs published by the Vietnamese government. CCFN is seeking to ensure continued usage rights for numerous common terms included on Vietnam's list either as stand-alone GIs or as part of a multi-term GI.
In Central America, "mozzarella" has popped up on the landscape among names where new proposed regulations are too vague to safely ensure protection of the common name. In both Nicaragua and Costa Rica CCFN has filed comments asking for clarification that "mozzarella" is protected as a generic term under the application for the GI Mozzarella di Bufala Campana. At the same time, CCFN seeks clarification on "bologna" in Nicaragua; and "romano" in Costa Rica, while directly opposing GIs for "asiago" and "gorgonzola" in Nicaragua that would ban the use by all non-Italian exporters of those terms. In Guatemala, the EU has appealed Guatemala's sound ruling last year that "parmesan" is generic; CCFN will continue to fight for protecting the generic term in this market.
Finally, the EU and Morocco announced in January they had reached agreement to mutually protect their GIs. In the broadest scope of a GI agreement to date, the EU and Morocco agreed to exchange protection for all GIs registered before January 2013. The EU reportedly wants to make further progress on a free trade agreement with Morocco this year. CCFN is concerned about the impact and uncertainty this agreement will create in the Moroccan market.
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Leaders who protect and promote common food names
Purtschert supports CCFN and is a vocal ally for protecting the rights to use common food names in Ecuador and around the globe. Read more