27/07/2022-Recent rulings and decisions further consolidate GI protection in the EU

Over the last months, the GI case law was further consolidated by interesting rulings and decisions. 

On May 25, the Court of Venice, upheld the arguments put forward by the Consorzio Tutela Grana Padano in a case concerning the use of the term ‘Grana’ to designate hard cheese produced in the Czech Republic by the Brazzale company. The Court of Venice ruled that the use of the term “Grana” constitutes an unlawful evocation of the Grana Padano PDO, as well as unfair competition. For more information on this case, you can read the press release published by the Consorzio (in Italian and English), which includes a link to the ruling text.    

On June 6, the EUIPO Cancellation Division upheld the request of invalidity of the European Union trade mark (EUTM) No 14 224 083 “PriSecco” (word mark). The request for a declaration of invalidity had been filed by the Consorzio Prosecco in September 2020 and was directed against all the goods in Class 32 covered by the EUTM. The request of the Consorzio was based on protected designation of origin ‘Prosecco’ and invoked Article 59(1)(a) EUTMR in conjunction with Article 7(1)(g) EUTMR, and Article 60(1)(d) EUTMR in conjunction with Article 8(6) EUTMR. The EUIPO Cancellation Division concluded that “there is a strong likelihood that for a substantial part of European consumers the contested mark ‘PriSecco’ will evoke in the mind of the average European consumer throughout the EU, the PDO ‘Prosecco’”. The decision is available here.

On July 14, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) released its Judgment of the Court in Case C-159/20 – “EC v Denmark (PDO Feta)”, opposing the European Commission to Denmark. The case concerned the use of the PDO Feta to designate a cheese produced in Denmark and exported to third countries. The Court concluded that by failing to stop the use of the designation ‘Feta’ for cheese intended for export to third countries, Denmark has failed to fulfil its obligations under EU law art. 13, paragraph 3 of Regulation 1151/2012).

To follow the GI case law, please consult the Enforcement page as well as the Relations with Trademarks page of our website.   

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