The Consortium for Common Food Names, National Milk Producers Federation and U.S. Dairy Export Council recently commended U.S. Trade Ambassador Katherine Tia for announcing an opinion on geographic indicators. USTR’s Special 301 Report, an annual publication tallying global challenges pertaining to intellectual property issues, called out the EU’s policy of blocking fair competition through the pursuit of geographical indications. The dairy groups say geographic indicators restrict the use of common food and beverage terms, which create barriers to trade in products relying on common food names.
The Consortium for Common Food Names Executive Director Jaime Castaneda says, “USTR has accurately diagnosed the problem,” adding, “Now the task before the U.S. is to take the necessary steps to effectively curb this scourge to U.S. food and agricultural producers.” The Consortium for Common Food Names filed extensive comments with USTR outlining geographic indicator-related developments, foreign governments’ roles in driving those policies and the impacts on U.S. farmers and food producers.