File this under: No longer sovereign
EU court: There’s no such thing as Finnish ‘cognac’
EU Business: There is no such thing as Finnish cognac, the European Union’s top court ruled on Thursday, barring spirit drink makers in Finland from using the French brandy’s name on their bottles. The Finnish company Gust. Ranin Oy labelled bottles with the names “Cognac, Hienoa Konjakkia” and “Cafe-Cognac, Kahvi-Konjakki” after securing authorisation from national authorities.
French cognac producers took the company to court, arguing that the name is protected under the European Union’s geographical indications rules. The EU Court of Justice sided with the French cognac makers, saying the use by the Finnish company of the name cognac would “adversely affect the protected indication.” Cognac must be made within a limited region around the town bearing its name in southwestern France, with a specific type of grape and production method.