European Commission publishes results of public consultation on possible legislative reform of non-agricultural geographical indications
The European Commission recently published the results of a public consultation on the adoption of a legislative framework for non-agricultural geographical indications (non-agricultural GIs). The public consultation brought together contributions from 182 respondents, mainly located in Italy, France, Germany and Spain, countries rich in local and traditional products that can potentially benefit from protection as non-agricultural GIs. According to the majority of respondents, the most feasible option to protect non-agricultural GIs would be the adoption of a specific regulation guaranteeing protection at EU level, similar to that already foreseen for agricultural products under Regulation (EU) No 1151/2012 on quality systems. Conversely, the use of the latter instrument or the use of collective or certification marks as provided for in Regulation (EU) n ° 2017/1001 on EU trade marks and in Directive (EU) n ° 2015/2436 to protect non-agricultural geographical indications received less approval from respondents. 89% of respondents also highlighted the need to implement a protection system for non-agricultural GIs to strengthen enforcement against abuse, counterfeiting and fraud of protected names. The European Commission is now expected to publish its roadmap or a legislative proposal for a protection system for non-agricultural GIs in the coming months.