Geographical indications – why is protection so patchwork?

By James Tumbridge and Robert Peake

Despite widely used EU protection for geographical indications, rights holders can also use national laws to protect their goods. However, there are fears that these two systems may lead to uneven protection and even the creation of monopolies

Geographical indications are terms which serve to inform consumers about the geographical provenance of products. Yet this unassuming IP right is the cause of fierce debate. It has even been blamed for holding up trade deals such as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

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Issue 72