What is geographical indication?

A geographical indication (GI) is a sign used on products that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that are due to that origin. In order to function as a GI, a sign must identify a product as originating in a given place. In addition, the qualities, characteristics or reputation of the product should be essentially due to the place of origin. Since the qualities depend on the geographical place of production, there is a clear link between the product and its original place of production.

What rights does GI provide?

A GI right enables those who have the right to use the indication to prevent its use by a third party whose product does not conform to the applicable standards. For example, in the jurisdictions in which the Darjeeling geographical indication is protected, producers of Darjeeling tea can exclude use of the term “Darjeeling” for tea not grown in their tea gardens or not produced according to the standards set out in the code of practice for the geographical indication.

For what type of products can GI used for?

GI are typically used for agricultural products, foodstuffs, wine and spirit drinks, handicrafts, and industrial products.

Who can use a protected GI?

The right to use a protected geographical indication belongs to producers in the geographical area defined, who comply with the specific conditions of production for the product.

Source: http://www.wipo.int/geo_indications/en/faq_geographicalindications.html