Switzerland as an indication of origin
Today, all over the world, our chocolate acts as a sweet flagship for Switzerland. This success is the result of the high quality standards that Swiss chocolate manufacturers set for their products. They have thus created the brand “Switzerland” as a symbol of enjoyment and the quality of chocolate. Our companies have been carrying the brand message to the world for over a century. However, this success also encourages imitators to appear on the scene, who make misleading references on foreign products to their purported Swiss origin. Preventing, detecting and combating such misuse has been a central task at CHOCOSUISSE for decades.
Prevention of misuse
CHOCOSUISSE systematically checks trademark registrations worldwide for goods in class 30 which also includes chocolate. If a registered trademark infringes the principles governing the use of the Swiss designation of origin, CHOCOSUISSE lodges an opposition against the registration before the relevant trademark office.
Detection of misuse
Information on misuse on the market is obtained through visits to trade fairs, from the international specialist press, Internet research, notifications from member companies, clarifications by the national representatives of the Swiss Chocolate Commission and from the public.
If there are indications of the improper use of the Swiss designation of origin for chocolate, CHOCOSUISSE proceeds to clarify the actual origin of the product. If the chocolate in question is not Swiss chocolate, CHOCOSUISSE demands that the relevant company stop using the Swiss designation of origin and takes legal action if necessary.
Registered trademarks for Swiss chocolate
CHOCOSUISSE is the owner of certification and collective trademarks with the designations “SWITZERLAND”, “SUISSE” and “SWISS” in the EU, US and Canada. Other instruments used worldwide include defensive measures under unfair competition law.
The principles governing the use of the Swiss designation of origin for chocolate are laid down in an industry agreement concluded by CHOCOSUISSE. An important requirement is that all stages of chocolate production must be carried out in entirety in Switzerland. For decades, the industry agreement has also provided the basis for law enforcement at home and abroad.