Liviko takes ministry to court over vodka geographic indication ({{commentsTotal}})

Janek Kalvi
Janek Kalvi Source: Photo: Postimees/Scanpix

AS Liviko, one of Estonia's largest distilleries, has asked the courts to stop an Agriculture Ministry request to the European Commission to register the geographic indication for Estonian vodka.

The company, which roduces such brands as Viru Valge, said the request breaches Liviko's trademarked slogans such as “Estonian Vodka” and “Viru Valge Estonian Vodka.”

The requests seeks protection for the label “Estonian Vodka,” which, if the request is approved, could only be used on products produced from Estonian-grown raw products. Liviko's vodkas would not be able to use the slogan as they are produced from ethanol manufactured in Latvia. Liiviko said no Estonian ethanol manufacturer is able to provide such stable quality ethanol.

“I doubt expropriation is necessary for valuing Estonian traditional vodka production, as is the aim stated in the request for an geographic indicator,” Janek Kalvi, Liviko's CEO said.

Liviko said only one Estonian producer, Estonian Spirit OÜ, meets all requirements in the ministry's request, and would give the company a monopoly in producing the required ethanol for vodka.

Liviko and other vodka producers have said the traditional production process is more important than the origin of raw materials.

Editor: J.M. Laats



Opinion
Easter Monday a public holiday? But you're forgetting productionEaster Monday a public holiday? But you're forgetting production
Estonia’s Easter Monday time loop: Discussing an additional day off

Every year, Estonia reliably asks itself the question whether or not Easter Monday should be made a public holiday. Opinions differ. While one side emphasizes the importance of family time, the other thinks an additional day off would threaten economic growth.

Minister of Social Protection Kaia Iva (IRL).Minister of Social Protection Kaia Iva (IRL).
Samost: Kaia Iva’s charisma could help IRL out of long-term low

In Sunday’s “Samost ja Rumm” radio debate show, editor-in-chief of ERR’s online news, Anvar Samost, and journalist and former politician Hannes Rumm discussed the potential and actual candidates for the chairmanship of the Pro Patria and Res Publica Union (IRL). At the time of the broadcast, Helir-Valdor Seeder had not yet made his intention to run public.