5/21/2018 – St. Helena, CA – As a proactive measure ahead of Brexit, the Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) nonprofit association has secured Certification Mark protection for the Napa Valley name in the United Kingdom.
NVV, the nonprofit association of 550 winery members, had previously obtained Geographic Indication (GI) Status for Napa Valley as a protected name in the European Union in 2007, the first time an American wine place name received such recognition. However, with the UK’s March 29, 2019 scheduled withdrawal from the EU, continued protection for the Napa Valley name was no longer guaranteed post-Brexit.
“The NVV is a leader in protecting place names for quality wine regions,” commented Pat Stotesbery, chair of the NVV’s Napa Name Protection Committee, NVV Board member and proprietor of Ladera Vineyards. “Obtaining a Certification Mark in the UK assures us that the Napa Valley name will be protected regardless of what happens with Brexit. Wine consumers in this important export market can continue to have confidence that when they enjoy a wine with ‘Napa Valley’ on the label, the quality and excellence our region stands for will be found in the bottle.”
In addition to being the first American wine region to obtain GI status in the EU in 2007, Napa Valley was also the first wine region in the world to earn GI status in the People’s Republic of China in 2012. The NVV has obtained name protection assurances for Napa Valley from more than a dozen other countries.
Napa Valley was one of five American and three European wine regions to sign the transatlantic agreement, Joint Declaration to Protect Wine Place & Origin, in 2005 and to embark on an effort to educate policymakers and consumers around the world about the importance of place names. Napa Valley remains an active member of this Wine Origins coalition, which today includes more than 20 other quality wine regions working to protect wine consumers from deceptive labeling practices.
Additionally, the NVV was the first regional wine trade association to sponsor statewide conjunctive labeling legislation in the late 1980s and also created the Napa Name Law, which went into effect in 2006, following a lengthy legal battle that went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Both labeling laws help to further protect the integrity of the Napa Valley name.
About the Napa Valley Vintners
The Napa Valley Vintners nonprofit trade association has been cultivating excellence since 1944 by inspiring its 550 members to consistently produce wines of the highest quality, to provide environmental leadership and to care for the extraordinary place they call home. Learn more at napavintners.com.