Well, it’s certainly a mark of the success of a product when others want to use the name illegally. And never has such a point been so true as with the name of ‘cognac.’ The BNIC has to be constantly vigilant as chances the world over try to get away with marketing their inferior brandy products as cognac, and the latest company to fall foul of these regulations is an Indian company based in Tamil Nadu, KALS Distilleries.
The company planned to market four different varieties of what they were intending to name ‘French Cognac Brandy.’ They were to be called Aspira Blended French Cognac Brandy, 1848 Blended French Cognac Brandy, Koniggen Blended French Cognac Brandy and Konige Fusion Blended French Cognac Brandy.
The Tamil Nadu government had issued a permit to allow KALS Distilleries to be allowed to market these products in January 2012, and on hearing about it the BNIC jumped into action. The name ‘cognac,’ as we know, is protected by Geographical Indication (GI) – in other words it needs to be grown and produced in the Cognac region of France under strict conditions. Only brandy created in such a method is entitled to be marketed under the name of cognac.
The BNIC originally wrote to the state government to forbid the use of the name, but when nothing occurred to stop it, they had to engage a local investigator to visit KALS Distilleries registered office, as well as their factory in the Pudukottai district of Chennai, India. They then filed a law suit that went to the Madras high court to prevent the company from using the name.
So, another well-earned victory for the BNIC. We have to say that we whole-heartedly support the work these guys do. And cognac aficionados the world over must also be breathing a sigh of relief that we have such a vigilant board who are committed to preserving the name and quality of our beloved eaux-de-vie…
Read more about other work of the BNIC and the fight against fake cognac.