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Geographical Indication Enforcement


Publication date
7 February 2022
European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency
Publication type
  • Case study



“Champagne” is a registered geographical indication (GI) in France, the EU and many other countries including India, as the climate conditions, soil texture, temperature and the skills required for its production define distinctiveness of the sparkling wine which is made in the Champagne region of France. The rights over the “Champagne” GI are owned and managed by the “Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne” (CIVC), an association representing the interests of producers and traders of Champagne. The producers and traders registered under CIVC used a network of local brokers and agents to sell their products in India. Over the years Champagne became commercially very successful in India. A local agent informed the CIVC that a beverage bearing the name of “Champagne”, as well as having the same bottle shape and colour was being sold in the market. Upon investigation, CIVC discovered that an Indian company manufacturing food and drinks has been infringing on their GI as they have been also producing, marketing and selling a non-sparkling and non-alcoholic beverage in various flavours under the name of “Champagne”. The label and packaging of the beverage was identical to the original product and hence it was evident that the Indian company was deliberately infringing on the “Champagne” GI. Consequently, CIVC consulted an IP expert to strategize an action plan against this infringement and enforce their rights. The IP expert advised that CIVC file a lawsuit against the Indian producer for infringement of the “Champagne” GI, as well as passing off, i.e. misrepresenting their product as being from the Champagne region.


Geographical Indication Enforcement