LANDMARK RULING FOR THE PROTECTION OF BALSAMIC VINEGAR OF MODENA PGI
There is important news from Germany regarding the protection of Balsamic Vinegar of Modena PGI: a landmark ruling today officially decreed, in the civil litigation between the Consortium for the Protection of the PGI product and a Germany company, that the latter is prohibited from freely using the term “balsamic” in the designation of its own products. The subject of the proceedings was whether or not the term “balsamic” could be used for products other than the renowned balsamic vinegars of Modena PDO and PGI. The publication of the reasons of the ruling is expected in the next few days; however, a note issued by the Mannheim Court makes clear the victory of the Protection Consortium and the Court’s total rejection of the German company’s request.
From this information one can see this ruling, which comes in the wake of other important cases such as the Parmesan one, representing a further confirmation of European Community legislation providing wide-ranging protection for PDO and PDI products, and in this specific case Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, against evocation. This is also the opinion of the Director of the Protection Consortium, Federico Desimoni: “The opportunity of protecting Balsamic Vinegar of Modena against products generically named as “balsamic” is of fundamental importance for our sector and greatly extends the activities of vigilance and protection that we will be able to carry out throughout Europe, starting in Italy, where there are still a great number of irregularities. It is good news, therefore, for the producers, but above all for the consumers, and an important reference for other courts and all relevant authorities. This is just the first step in a protection strategy that will be carried on with conviction on several fronts, both in and outside the courts“.
There is still a lot of work to do, but this first ruling represents a precedent of great importance, as shown by the enthusiasm of the Consortium President, Dr Stefano Berni: “It’s an extraordinarily important ruling and it will be a landmark in the history of Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, as it confirms the effectiveness of the work done by the Protection Consortium which, on starting its activities a little over a year ago, had as its main objective that of implementing the protection of the “Balsamic Vinegar of Modena PGI” designation. This judgment, following as it does the one about the exclusivity of the name Grana, that can now be associated only with the term “Padano”, and the one about the term Parmesan, that can be used only to identify Parmigiano Reggiano, is a third ruling with a fundamental importance for the protection of PDO and PGI certified products in the whole sector. After winning the battle about the term Grana in the European Court of Justice, I am personally very pleased that there has been a luminous victory about the term Balsamic. I wish to thank the Consortium Board of Directors, the Director Desimoni, the Attorney for the Consortium, Mr. Bocedi, Minister Martina and his Head of Department, Dr Bianchi, for taking part in the complicated process that has led to this splendid result. Today is the start of a new stage of greater certainty and better guarantees for all the serious producers of Balsamic Vinegar of Modena PGI“.
There are many reasons for enthusiasm and optimism about this landmark ruling, and we look forward to finding out more about this issue from a technical and legal point of view and to highlighting further significant aspects of common interest.