15 Nov 2018

IGIR lunch seminar by Maurizio Crupi

Linking the Product to its Origin: Geographical Indications for Handicrafts

Geographical Indications (GIs in short) are signs used to safeguard the existence of a link between a product and its place of origin, with a focus on quality and tradition. The strength of this link changes depending on the international treaties and the legal definitions that are taken into account. The scope of protection defined in the international treaties is quite broad, encompassing all categories of products. On the contrary, the scope of protection of the sui generis GI system of the European Union is category-based and limited only to certain categories of products, with the exclusion of non-agricultural ones.
Is it possible to broaden the current European definition of GIs to include non-agricultural products?
This research intends to provide a conventional content analysis of the product specifications of agricultural products made available on the database of the European Commission. This qualitative analysis will explore whether there has been a progressive loosening of the link between the products and their origin. In particular with regard to the links through human and reputational factors, which are more often claimed for non-agricultural products. What are the issues of a looser link with the territory when it comes to balancing innovation for traditional products?