Legal breakthrough in Australia for Scotch Whisky
15 Apr 2014
Scotch Whisky registered as a trade mark
In a major breakthrough, Scotch Whisky has been registered as a
certification trade mark in Australia, giving consumers and the
industry better protection against fakes.
The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA), the industry trade body,
said there has been a serious problem with fake 'Scotch Whisky'
being sold in Australia in recent years.
Australia has been one of the worst markets for fake 'Scotch'.
The SWA has taken action to stop the sale of 40 brands of fake
'Scotch' in Australia since 2005. It is believed this is the result
of specific protection for Scotch Whisky being removed from the
country's Food Standards Code in 2000 and a lack of enforcement
activity by the authorities. As a result, the onus for policing the
market has fallen entirely on the trade.
The SWA sought assistance from the UK Government and the
European Commission. They gave ongoing support, with Foreign
Secretary William Hague raising the issue on a visit to Australia
and the EC drawing it to the attention of the Australian Government
in bilateral meetings.
Alan Park, legal adviser at the Scotch Whisky Association, said:
"I have been involved in actions against many fake 'Scotch Whisky'
products in Australia in recent years. Registration of Scotch
Whisky as a certification trade mark is a major breakthrough and
will make it easier to crack down on fakes and therefore protect
consumers, although the onus to prevent the sale of fakes still
rests on the industry.
"It has taken time and effort to achieve this result and we
would like to thank the UK Government and European Commission for
their support. Scotch Whisky exports are of immense value to the
economy so overseas protection is vital. We will be monitoring the
market and will use our new protection for Scotch Whisky to take
decisive action against fakes."
Scotch Whisky exports to Australia were worth £84 million in
2013, up 7% from £79m in 2012, making it the twelfth largest
overseas market by value.
NOTES TO EDITORS
With media enquires contact Rosemary Gallagher, SWA communications
manager, 0131 222 9230/07432 605 385 or email firstname.lastname@example.org