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Bavaria N’V v Bayerischer Brauerbund Ev

Written by Jean-Michel Omanga on 10 February 2011

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Bavaria is a worldwide famous Dutch beer which has the particularity of having the name of a German region. Bavaria possesses different trade marks including the word Bavaria.

Brauerbund is a German association which goal is to protect the Bavarian beer and brewers. The association registered different trade marks for protecting Bavarian brewers.

The Brauerbund made an application for having a Protected Geographical Indication registration. This registration is given under article 17(1) of Regulation No 2081/92. The German authority used the simplified process under article 17 (1) condition.

Before that the Bavarian brewers were only protected under indications of origin by bilateral agreements with Germany and other countries.

The Brauerdund sued the Dutch company for abandoning his Bavaria trademark which is protected worldwide even in Germany. The German court asked to the Court of Justice a preliminary ruling.

The legal question is to know if article 14 (1) of Regulation 510/2006 is applicable when the geographical indication has been given in the simplify procedure under article 17 of regulation 2081/92?

The interpretation of the Court is awaited but the Court could have the same pro-Bavaria point of view like in the case C-343/07 Bavaria and Bavaria Italia.

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