Tuesday, 20 May 2014

CHAMPAGNE for bleach? Not in Chile!

Chile's Industrial Property Court has reversed a first instance decision issued by the National Institute of Industrial Property (INAPI) relating to the registration of the word CHAMPAGNE as a trade mark for goods in Class 3. INAPI initially rejected the application for only some of the goods covered; the court however rejected the application in its entirety.  Rodrigo Cooper applied as long ago as 2008 to register the word CHAMPAGNE for various goods in Class 3. The Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne opposed, claiming that the application violated Articles 19, 20(e), (f) and (j) of the Industrial Property Law (Law 19.039), Article 10 of the Paris Convention and Articles 22 et seq. of TRIPS. Said the Comité, “Champagne” was a famous appellation of origin and its use for other products would create confusion in the market. No, said Cooper: “Champagne” was unrelated to products in Class 3, so there would pose no risk of confusion of consumers.

In April 2012 INAPI rejected the opposition based on Articles 20(e) and (j) of the Industrial Property Law, since protection the appellation of origin CHAMPAGNE only applied to products in Class 33. The opposition was upheld for “soaps, essential oils, cosmetics and hair lotions” based on Article 20(f), where there was a risk of confusion, but rejected for “bleaching preparations and other substances for laundry preparations for cleaning,” among other products.

The Comité appealed to the Industrial Property Court which, in September 2013, allowed the appeal and refused the trade mark for all products in Class 3. Since the term “Champagne” corresponded to a famous appellation of origin, it could not be used or registered in Chile by anyone who was not a producer of that type of wine in France. Moreover, acceptance of the mark would induce consumers to believe that products bearing that mark were originally from the French region of Champagne.

Source: INTA Bulletin, May 1, 2014 Vol. 69 No. 9

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