PROTECTION OF GEOGRAPHICAL
INDICATIONS IN BRAZIL *
Peter D. Siemsen **
Like in other areas of the world which were colonized by European emi-
grants, also in South America the use of geographical indications (except
for the country of origin), indications of origin and, above all, appellations
of origin were practically not considered, mainly due to the cultural ties of
these emigrants to their original regions and the traditions and habits they
brought with them.
Only in more recent times the matter started to be looked upon with
In some of the South American countries there has been some juris-
prudence over the years recognizing that the protection of geographical
indications was important not only to protect producers in a given region
but also to safeguard consumers.
The establishment of a common market in South America comprising
Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay and known as “
provoked new thoughts and studies.
All of the four countries are in one way or another important wine, spir-
its, tobacco, table-water and cheese producers. All four produce beer, which
in this part of the world has lost its source identity due to standardization
through labeling and packaging.
But wine is undoubtedly the product which is responsible for the atten-
tion the matter is receiving. Gradually interested parties are realizing that
benefits may be gained by identifying more precisely the region of the cor-
responding production. The initial step in this direction will be to convince
* Revised and updated text of an article by Peter Dirk Siemsen, published fifteen years
ago.** Lawyer and Industrial Property Attorney. Member of Honor and Former President
of the International Association for the Protection of Intellectual Property (AIPPI). Founder
and President of Honor of the Interamerican Association of Intellectual Property (ASIPI)
and the Brazilian Intellectual Property Association (ABPI). Member of Honor of the Inter-
national Federation of Industrial Property Attorneys (FICPI) and the Brazilian Association
of Industrial Property Agents (ABAPI). Vice-Chair of the Intellectual Property Commission
of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). Partner, Dannemann, Siemsen, Bigler &
Ipanema-Moreira, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
1 Decree 350 of 21/11/91, published in the Official Gazette of 22/11/91.