from Jonathan Tardif, litigation associate at law firm Eversheds

Sir; The US government’s agreement to impose restrictions on its winemakers’ use of 17 European wine names as a prelude to an eventual ban is to be welcomed. This will end the 20-year battle between Europe and the US over the use of the name Champagne.
The agreement is a sensible way forward which brings certainty to the drinks industry. But as well as reducing the likelihood of future disputes, it should also serve as a warning to any other producers who wish to use region-specific terms for generic products.
There have been many high profile battles along similar lines in the food industry, for example the dispute over Parma ham and Feta cheese. Consumers are becoming increasingly savvy so it is vital that manufacturers adopt a responsible approach to ensure the customer is getting what the label suggests is inside.

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