University of New South Wales Faculty of Law Research Series
Last Updated: 7 August 2012
GI Blues: The Global Disagreement over Geographical Indications
Michael Handler, University of New South Wales
Robert Burrell, University of Western Australia
This paper is available for download at http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2125818
This paper was published as a chapter in Kathy Bowrey, Michael Handler and Dianne Nicol (eds), Emerging Challenges in Intellectual Property, Oxford University Press, 2011, pp. 126-144. This paper may also be referenced as  UNSWLRS 30.
This chapter explores the vexed question of the legal protection of geographical indications of origin, or ‘GIs’, which control how terms indicating geographical origin may be used in relation to goods such as foodstuffs and alcoholic beverages. For many years GI protection has caused significant controversy among policy makers. More specifically, the debate over GIs tends to be characterised as a battle between the EU on the one hand, and various agricultural producers such as the USA, Australia and New Zealand on the other, over appropriate legal standards. The authors argue that although European policy makers make achievements on this issue, a global agreement on GI protection remains far away.