Have you ever wondered why Champagne can only be called Champagne if it comes from a very specific area in France? Does Parma Ham need to come from Parma? And does Portland stone have to come from Portland?
These were some of the topics of discussion at a Bournemouth University conference looking at the Geographical Indications (GIs) of particular products and whether such foods and products can continue to have their names protected.
The event, organised by the Centre for Intellectual Property, Policy and Management (CIPPM), had the important debate as the European Union faces difficult policy choices on how to protect the names of products which have a link to a specific geographic place.
Nicola Coppola organised the event and said, “I chose this particular topic because there is resurgence, at international and European level, of the debate on GIs. In the face of legislative changes that could have wide effects on the protected names of products, it is important that academics and the industry look at the impact of such changes – how important it is that consumers relate Champagne, Portland Stone or Jersey Royal Potatoes to particular regions, for instance – and what the impact on UK producers would be.
Co-sponsored by Bournemouth University and Grana Padano cheese, the one-day conference brought together researchers, GI producers, UK and European institutions and policy makers to debate key issues for the prospects of GI legislation in the EU.
For more information, visit the CIPPM website.