29 July 2021 News

UNIDO (2010), “Adding value to traditional products of regional origin. A guide to creating a quality consortium”, Vienna

The following pages will address, from a practical perspective, the factors that need to be considered in order effectively to support the promotion of, and adding value to, a traditional product of regional origin. While this document is dedicated primarily to association processes, it was deemed essential to clarify concepts and elucidate the legal implications of geographical indications, particularly by putting them into perspective with regard to trademark legislation. The first part of the paper is dedicated therefore to the legal aspects. In the second section, value-adding groups are defined in general and the promotion of traditional products of regional origin is discussed. Furthermore, the role of typical products in the dynamics of rural development is highlighted and initial insight into quality consortia is provided. The third part, which is the methodological component of the document, deals with the various issues that must be considered when creating and developing a quality consortium. This section discusses the factors that determine, firstly, the extent of the socio-economic benefits that consortium members can obtain through their involvement in the joint initiative and secondly, the degree of success a traditional product of regional origin may achieve in the market. It specifically addresses: the desirable characteristics of the product to be promoted; methods for launching a collective value-adding initiative; procedures for jointly developing and implementing common production rules; services a quality consortium can offer; ways of collectively promoting the product; the issue of expanding the quality consortium; the criteria for applying for a geographical indication; and the importance of external support. Although the document includes theoretical considerations, it is action-oriented and focuses on topics applying in the field. This objective is borne out in the many case studies provided in the text.