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18th December 2020
Data, Tech & IP

Analysis: “Court of Justice: protected geographic indications and designation of origin prohibit the use of a characteristic shape or appearance of a product covered by a registered name” by Bernd Justin Jütte

In Syndicat interprofessionnel de défense du fromage Morbier (C-490/19) the Court of Justice of the European Union interprets the scope of protection of designations of origin and geographical indications to cover not only the registered name, but also the shape or appearance or characteristic of the relevant product. Protected geographical indications (PGI) and protected designations of origins (PDO) provide help to inform consumers of certain characteristics (such as origin and mode of manufacturing) of, amongst others, agricultural products and foodstuffs.

At EU level the rules on PDOs and PGOs are harmonised by Regulation (EU) No 1151/2012. The use of names protected as a designation or indication can be used by any person as

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