2 firms to apply for GI seal-A A +A
Friday, July 20, 2012
THE Intellectual Property Field Operation Unit (IP-FOU) of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) 11 said two companies in the Davao Region have signified interest to apply for Geographical Indication (GI) seal.
IP-FOU Davao Region specialist Marie Lou Gabiana, in a phone interview Friday, identified the firms as Davao Pomelo and Davao Highland Bananas.
GI is a new category in the intellectual property rights, which include trademark, patent utility model, industrial design and copyright.
Gabiana said officials from IP-FOU in Davao Region conducted a meeting with these two firms' executives to identify the key players involve with the company on July 5.
"We were supposed to have the development of code of practice, but there were producers who arrived who needed orientation on GI," Gabiana said.
Gabiana said they will work on the code of practice of Davao Bananas in August.
The code of practice states the common restrictions, including packaging and processing facilities, for the producers to follow in order to meet the quality standards of their products, according to Gabiana.
Gabiana added that IPO listed only eight priority products identified in the country such as Lake Sebu Tinalak, Dagupan Bangus, Lumban Barong, Barako Coffee, Guimaras Mangoes, Cebu Processed Dried Mangoes, Bicol Pili and Aklan Piña cloth.
Once a GI seal or mark is issued to the producers' association, the branding cannot anymore be copied by other regions since GI gives certain distinction on a certain product of every area of its kind in the country, considering the product's taste and texture.
"It's identifying what makes a certain product different from the others. For example Davao Pomelo, what makes the pomelo of Davao different from the other pomelo’s of other regions. Even the firms within the region cannot also use the GI seal, if they are not able to meet the code of practice," Gabiana said.
In the Philippines, the issuance of GI seal or mark takes about one to two years. Gabiana added that the assessment period takes long because a through checking must be done if a firm deserves to receive the GI seal.
Gabiana explained that Geographical Indication identifies products of a place, region, and territory where it is given quality, reputation or other characteristics are essentially attributable to its geographical origin.
Some 400 to 500 IP holders have so far availed of the IP right registration, 70 to 80 of which for patent, utility model, and industrial design and 10 for copyright since the satellite registration was put in place in 2008.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on July 21, 2012.