PROTECTED GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATION
Globalization has created niches of more conscious and demanding consumers, with new consumer trends, who distrust products that are not authentic. New consumers demand a credible and verifiable link between producers and final consumers.
Geographical Indications (GIs) are also known in certain countries as Denominations of Origin (DO) or Protected Geographical Indication (PGI). They represent the link between the quality of a product and its origin, thus fulfilling a promise of quality and tradition to customers and consumers. To fulfill this promise it is necessary to provide complete information about the product, its specific characteristics and its processes.
Currently conceived as an intangible asset subject to legal regulation, the GIs / DO are much more than that: they are instruments that guarantee that behind an extraordinary product is the authenticity and effort of a population, and of a region or country that has extraordinary environmental conditions.
From a legal point of view, the GIs/DO has distinctive signs: symbols or names that associate quality products and reputation, with the specific geographical area or place of production (region or country). This intangible asset, of mandatory respect in countries where its protection is recognized by law, emerges as an ideal mechanism to safeguard the permanence of the characteristics and reputation of the products produced in the geographical location from which they claim to come, protecting them from those products that suggest having a certain origin, quality, specific production processes, or association with a geographical area when they do not have it, thus avoiding unfair competition.
Therefore, geographical indications are a guarantee of origin for Colombian coffee growers and distributors, since they allow them to guarantee the authenticity of their product and compliance with the quality standards of Colombian Coffee.
The protection of geographical indications can be found in different countries under different regulations, such as laws on unfair competition, consumer protection, industrial property, trademarks or special laws on the protection of geographical indications of origin.
Beyond the advocacy role of those who abuse the reputation of a specific origin, geographical indications are also an element that allows different coffee brands to demonstrate to their customers, consumers and interest groups, their willingness to submit to the requirements and quality policies associated with a specific origin. They are an element of differentiation that contributes to producers and marketers the ability to guarantee an origin to consumers.
Those who roast and market coffee with a protected geographical indication are aware of the importance of the origin, both for the quality of the drink and for the relationship of coffee and the environment and its social impact. Geographical indications are, consequently, a means to demonstrate the interest of brands in social and environmental responsibility issues, and a guarantee of the commercialization of authentic and genuine products.