IRISH WHISKY HAS SECURED GI STATUS IN INDIA
By Siulan Law Mathews DipWSET
The Irish Whiskey Association (IWA) has secured geographic indication (GI) status for Irish whiskies in India, indicating that only whiskies made in Ireland can be labelled as “Irish Whisky” when sold in India.
IWA believes that the GI status would support the growth of Irish whisky in the Indian market.
India is the biggest market in the world for whiskies with 2.3 billion bottles sold there last year.
Though majority of the whiskies sold in India are domestically produced, the GI status will give Irish whisky some protective edge, particularly in the premium end of the market.
Sales of Irish whisky in the Indian market doubled last year to 34,000 cases with plenty of scope to grow given the expansion of middle class population there.
The protection will enable IWA to maximise opportunities to increase sales in one of the most important markets for whisky in the world.
IWA’s legal advisor Carleen Madigan said: “Securing the geographical indication for Irish whisky in India is another landmark for the Irish whiskey category.
“Like similar registrations achieved earlier in the year in Australia and South Africa, this is another major success in our efforts to protect the integrity of Irish whisky on a worldwide basis.”
Madigan added: “We will now be able to take much tougher enforcement action against fake Irish whisky products on sale in India.”
Earlier in April, IWA secured GI approval from the European Commission along with Irish cream and Irish poitín.
Exports of Irish whiskies have been growing very fast, IWA is expecting export volume to double to 12 million cases by 2020.
(the writer can be contacted at: SLawMathews@thewinechronicle.com)
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