TAPAS bars in Barcelona, Spain, called champanillos may see a legal challenge from the champagne region of France.
Tapas bars in Barcelona, Spain, called champanillos may see a legal challenge from the champagne region of France if the European Court of Justice responds to a legal opinion that was published on Thursday.
The industry body that represents champagne makers in France has made a complaint that the Spanish bars violate their designation protected under EU law by using a name similar to and derived from “Champagne”.
The court’s advocate general has said that even though the EU law is in place to prevent protected designation of origin (PDO) products from “all parasitic commercial practices”, which includes services, “does not constitute ‘use’ within the meaning of that regulation, of the PDO ‘Champagne’”. In this case the use of the word ‘champanillo’.
Champanillo comes from the Spanish word for champagne, “champan”, with the diminutive at the end making a word meaning “little champagne”.
The advocate general’s opinion added a warning that, if a champanillo has a sign or a featured link to champagne then this could infringe the protected Champagne name.
Opinions from the advocate general are considered by the court, though it is not bound to follow them.