New Zealand has introduced a legally-binding registration system for its wine regions that will give cast-iron protection to its appellations both at home and abroad.
While the country’s Fair Trading Act has ensured that wines are not mis-labelled as coming from any Geographical Indication (GI) other than the one in which they are grown, the new legislation offers an added degree of security.
The Geographical Indications Registration Act will recognise a region’s intellectual property making it impossible for a wine to be described as, say, ‘Marlborough-like’ unless it actually comes from that GI.
‘Allowing our wine regions to have their status and boundaries formally recognised and registered by the government, gives additional legal protection and will help us ensure those GIs can be cross-registered into foreign GI registration systems also,’ said Jeffrey Clarke, acting CEO of New Zealand Wine Growers.
Eighteen GI Applications were filed just after midnight on the day the Act came into force, including the likes of Waipara Valley, Hawke’s Bay, Marlborough, Central Otago and Martinborough.