Whether you prefer single malt, grain or blended, Scotch whisky (or "Scotch") is a drink enjoyed and cherished by many, from kings, to authors, to movie stars. It is a drink that you want to be the authentic experience. Which is why the registering of the trade mark in Australia is a great thing!
Scotch has a deeply embedded history and its very making is specified by law. To be labeled Scotch, a whisky must be distilled and initially matured in Scotland in oak barrels for at least 3 years.
Australia has the reputation of being one of the worst markets for fake 'Scotch'. Over 40 brands of fake varieties have been found and removed by the Scotch Whisky Association since 2005.
The Scotch Whisky Association has been appealing to the UK Government and the European Commission ever since Scotch whisky was removed from Australia's Food Standards Code in 2000.
Since then fakes have run rampant due to lack of enforcement by authorities. This has left policing the market entirely to Scotch traders.
Scotch is a major source of income for the economy and according to SWA data, Scotch whisky exports in 2013 to Australia were worth £84 million, making it the 12th largest overseas market by value. Its no wonder they have sought to protect the industry and uphold the proud tradition of Scotch whisky.
Alan Park, legal adviser at the SWA has said it is "a major breakthrough" for the industry
“I have been involved in actions against many fake ‘Scotch’ whisky products in Australia in recent years". "Registration of Scotch whisky as a certification trade mark will make it easier to crack down on fakes and therefore protect consumers, although the onus to prevent the sale of fakes still rests on the industry."
“It has taken time and effort to achieve this result and we would like to thank the UK Government and European Commission for their support. Scotch Whisky exports are of immense value to the economy so overseas protection is vital.”
This is a perfect example of why trade marks exist, to protect the consumer from counterfeit and fake goods and uphold the authenticity of the product being sold. So the question is...
Will you trade mark your next idea?