Trademarks and Geographical Names

Moderator: Mr. Howard Poliner, Director of Intellectual Property Law, Israeli Ministry of Justice

  • Mr. Massimo Vittori, Managing Director of oriGIn
  • Mrs. Jacqueline Bracha, Deputy Director of the Israel Patent Office
  • Mr. Craig Thorn, Managing Partner of DTB Associates, on behalf of the Consortium for Common Food Names trade organization (CCFN)
  • Adv. Raimondo Galli, Studio Galli Avvocati, Italy

Monday, March 21, 11:15 am - 1:00 pm, Hall B

To a French consumer "champagne" means a wine of any type and any grape variety grown on a vineyard in the Champagne region of France. To a consumer in North America "champagne" simply means a sparkling white wine without any connection to any particular producer or region. To an American beer drinker "Budweiser" is a trade mark, whereas in the Czech Republic "Budweiser" means a beer from the former Budweis region. Producers use common and proprietary languages to convey consumer information about their products. What happens when those languages share common words, but use them with different meanings? Are proprietary rights infringed or diluted? Are consumers confused? Are new treaties needed to enforce language codes? Or are conflicts between trademarks, geographical indications and common language just a tempest in a (Darjeeling) tea pot?