The registration of four new geographical indications (GIs) – “Akhalkalaki potato”, “Kutaisi greens”, “Tkibuli tea” and “Machakhela honey” is being prepared.
National Intellectual Property Center of Georgia Sakpatenti and the Scientific-Research Center of Agriculture plan to carry out joint activities in support to protection and development of Georgian Appellations of Origin and Geographical Indications of agricultural products.
Protection of geographical indications represents one of the main components of deep and comprehensive Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and Georgia. It is also considered as one of the strategic directions of the development of Agriculture.
At present, more than 30 products (wines, mineral water, cheese, etc.) produced in Georgia are registered as geographical indications (GIs) and represent the major part of Georgian export goods.
In 2014, in the framework of the EU Program ENPARD (European Neighborhood Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development in Georgia) the specifications were drafted for registration of four new geographical indications (Akhalkalaki potato, Kutaisi greens, Tkibuli tea and Machakhela honey) and four associations were established to manage the usage of these geographical indications.
According to the preliminary assessment in this particular context Georgia has a huge potential. Actually, due to the unique natural conditions and traditions, all regions of Georgia have potential to produce a big variety of products protected under geographical indications, and consequently, contribute greatly to the development of the region.
One of the most important instruments of producing high-quality and competitive agricultural products is geographical indication. Geographical indication is the name of a geographical area used to designate goods the specific features and quality of which are due to the typical, often unique environmental conditions of this geographical area (soil, water, climate, traditional technology of production).
Today world counts more than ten thousand very famous GIs with total value of 80 billion dollars, among them: Champagne, Cognac, Parmesan, Roquefort, Bordeaux, Darjeeling tea, Basmati rice, etc., are well-known throughout the world. However, in the last decades increasing numbers of geographical indications are recognized and becoming more popular on both national and international markets.
European Union has the most developed system of protection of GIs where more than 3500 agricultural products are protected (wines, spirits, fruit, vegetables, cheese, meat products, etc.). Each year more than 100 new products are registered and protected as geographical indications in the EU countries. As the studies reveal, the value of the products protected under the system of geographical indications are at average, 2.5-times more expensive than the similar products, and have exclusively high demand on the market.
GIs play extremely important role in the regional development of the country, namely the use of such instrument in corresponding region:
- Promotes creation of new jobs and increases income;
- Reduces the outflow of workforces from the regions and retains local population in the particular area;
- Increases awareness of the region and promotes development of the agro-tourism.
Preliminary agreement has been reached between Sakpatenti and the Scientific-Research Center of Agriculture on joining the efforts and completing joint activities in this particular direction which is being concluded with respective memorandum of understanding.
Meeting of Nikoloz Gogilidze, Chairman of SAKPATENTI, and the representatives of the Scientific-Research Center of Agriculture