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Special Issue "Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Geography and Sustainability".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 March 2021) | Viewed by 26884

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Giovanni Belletti
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Economics and Management, University of Florence, via delle Pandette 9, 50127 Firenze, Italy
Interests: agricultural economics; rural development; agri-food marketing; geographical indications; local food systems; regional and food policies
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Prof. Andrea Marescotti
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Dipartimento di Scienze per l’economia e l’impresa, University of Firenze, 50127 Firenze, Italy
Interests: socio-economic analysis of origin products, evaluation of geographical indications effects and origin products valorization; agrobiodiversity protection and valorisation systems; short and alternative food supply-chains; value chain analysis; food quality standards and agri-food system globalisation; food and rural tourism
Prof. Filippo Arfini
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Economic and Business Science, University of Parma, 12 - I 43121 Parma, Italy
Interests: economics of food quality schemes; assessment of CAP reform by means of quantitative methods; rural development policies in developed countries
Dr. François Casabianca
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
National Institute of Agronomic research (INRA) Research Department on Science for Action and Development (SAD), LRDE Quartier Grossetti 20250 CORTE Corse, France
Interests: livestock farming system and localized agrifood systems; collective management of local breeds and valorization of the productions in value chains; territorial qualification of the productions and technological innovations; local development and quality of the “terroir” products; geographical indications (PDO, PGI); facilitation of the negotiation of agreements in participatory research
Dr. Emilie Vandecandelaere
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Food and Agriculture Organizations of the United Nations (FAO), Rome, Italy
Interests: food quality; rural and territorial development; geographical indications; evaluation of impacts and sustainability; traditions and innovations; standards and certifications; governance in value chains; agritourism and gastronomy ; biodiversity; public policies
Prof. Junko Kimura
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Faculty of Business Administration, Hosei University, Tokyo 102-8160, Japan
Interests: agri-food marketing, rural development, and geographical indications (GI), GIS contribution toward SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals), EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), sustainable agricultre, value chain management of agricultural, forestry and fishery products and foodstuffs

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In a globalized world and economy, geographical origin plays a relevant role in agriculture and the agrifood system. Many producers (farmers and processors) can differentiate their products on the market thanks to their link to origin, and an increasing share of consumers pays attention to both material and immaterial quality attributes linked to the place of production.

Origin products have specific quality resulting from their geographical origin. They are the outcome of technical, social, environmental, cultural, and economic interactions, including the mobilization of local specific resources, both physical (local breeds and varieties, soil specificities, microclimate conditions, etc. ) and human ones (contextual know-how, history, cultural traditions, gastronomy, etc.). Origin products, thanks to their links to local specific resources and mobilization of local actors, have the potential to enhance economic, social, and environmental sustainability of localized agrifood production systems and rural areas, and to provide different kinds of local and global public goods (e.g., territorial reputation, agricultural landscape, food heritage, etc.) (Belletti G., Marescotti A., Touzard J., 2017, Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development: The Roles of Actors' Strategies and Public Policies. World Development, 98, 45-57).

Geographical indications (GIs) often identify origin products, they incorporate their reputation and, for that reason, they are protected as collective intellectual property rights according to different legal frameworks in many countries. Collective labeling through GIs is often the pivot of valorization strategies activated by producers and other public and private stakeholders all around the world, following different aims and strategies. Collective action and GIs local governance models are the key factors in determining the (positive and negative) effects of GI valorization initiatives on sustainability and public good provision. Indeed, GI valorization initiatives can exert positive economic effects (on revenues, fair distribution of value-added, economic resilience, etc.), social effects (on employment, social cohesion, collective action, gender issues, local knowledge), and environmental effects (support to multifunctional agriculture, management of specific local resources, landscape, agro-biodiversity preservation, etc.), thus reproducing and improving local specific resources activating a virtuous circle (Vandecandelaere E., Arfini F., Belletti G., Marescotti A., 2009. Linking people, places and products. A guide for promoting quality linked to geographical origin and sustainable geographical indications. FAO - SINERGI).

However, depending on the local conditions of establishment and implementation, this potential virtuous circle between origin products, geographical indications valorization initiatives, and sustainability is not always successful, and shortcomings may arise. In particular, several studies observe some gaps in the model of the virtuous circle such as i) conflicts among the local actors (affecting the governance), ii) lack of value-added sharing (between raw material producers and processors in long supply chains), iii) adoption of mainstream innovation packages inducing loss of local knowledge, iv) strong specialization that jeopardizes the territory reducing its internal diversity, v) worsening of environmental conditions, for example, the push to the intensification due to market success or weakening of the bond with local agrobiodiversity, vi) main orientation towards external up-markets and worldwide value chains depriving the local consumers of the heritage of their specialty products.

The aim of this Special issue is to provide evidence-based knowledge at a world-wide scale on how collective action around the valorization of origin products through geographical indications initiatives is linked in an effective way to the provision of public goods and sustainable development interacting with its different pillars: economic, social, environmental, and governance.

In particular, this Special Issue welcomes papers that present evidence (positive and negative) and use innovative methodologies on the following topics:

  • Social, economic, and environmental characteristics of origin products systems and of their value chains; links between origin products and agrobiodiversity, agroecology principles, traditional farming systems, the environment, and landscape
  • Value chain analysis and market analysis, with a focus on short/alternative food supply chains, HORECA circuits, agritourism, and public food procurement systems;
  • Collective action and governance models in GI valorization initiatives, critical points, different models, and success factors
  • GI initiatives and the use of legal protection tools (denominations of origin, collective trademarks)
  • Processes of construction of collective rules (code of practices) in protected GIs, conflicts and convergences; the role of local specific resources in the construction of the identity of GI products
  • Producers–consumers interactions in GI valorization initiatives; the role of certification systems and innovative ways of guarantee (participatory guarantee systems) for signaling social and environmental attributes of GI products
  • Integration of GI initiatives with other economic activities in the territories (i.e., artisanal activities, tourism, leisure activities)
  • Assessment of the impacts GI initiatives on firms, local agrifood production systems, rural economy and rural areas; contribution to the transition to sustainable agriculture and food systems; contribution to local and global public goods
  • Public policies supporting the sustainability of origin products and GI valorization initiatives; GIs initiatives in wider territorial policies
  • Links to nutrition and food security (diet diversity, impacts of traditional practices on nutritional composition, sensorial/organoleptic quality and impact on diet/satiety, etc.)
  • Methodologies for the assessment of the impacts of valorization of geographical indications on sustainability and public goods

Prof. Dr. Giovanni Belletti
Prof. Andrea Marescotti
Prof. Filippo Arfini
Dr. François Casabianca
Dr. Emilie Vandecandelaere
Prof. Junko Kimura
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • origin products,
  • geographical indications
  • local and global public goods
  • protected denomination of origin
  • collective action
  • governance
  • collective labelling
  • impact assessment
  • sustainability
  • agrobiodiversity
  • agroecology transition
  • localized agrifood systems

Published Papers (19 papers)

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Communication
The Geographical Indication Pathway to Sustainability: A Framework to Assess and Monitor the Contributions of Geographical Indications to Sustainability through a Participatory Process
Sustainability 2021, 13(14), 7535; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13147535 - 06 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1367
Abstract
Geographical Indications (GIs) are widely considered as tools to contribute to sustainability (The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations—FAO, 2009; 2017), if established and well managed. While the literature may not always agree on the positive effects of GIs in all [...] Read more.
Geographical Indications (GIs) are widely considered as tools to contribute to sustainability (The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations—FAO, 2009; 2017), if established and well managed. While the literature may not always agree on the positive effects of GIs in all sustainability dimensions (e.g., economic, social, and environmental), there is evidence that engaging GI producers in a sustainability strategy can maximize their contribution to different components of sustainable development. FAO and oriGIn developed the sustainability strategy for GI (SSGI) to support GI producers and their associations so that they could engage in a place-based and participative approach in order to generate concrete progress and results. This paper presents original research for building both a framework and database for the selection and use of relevant sustainability indicators for GIs. A number of SSGI principles have guided the work throughout an iterative process for reviewing, selecting, and improving relevant indicators, while the Sustainability Assessment of Food and Agriculture (SAFA) has provided the structure to align with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and other widely used and recognized sustainability frameworks. As a result of this work, a database of 372 robust sustainability indicators that are relevant to GIs have been characterized to facilitate their use by practitioners. The discussion highlights the importance of the place-based approach, and the participative, inclusive process that represents the key to empowerment and the ability to develop alliances. It also focuses on action, and the need to strengthen both internal and external communication. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
The Hindrances to Obtaining Protected Geographical Indications for Products in Mexico. Case Study of Dairy Farming in the Cienega de Chapala, Michoacan
Sustainability 2021, 13(12), 6701; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13126701 - 12 Jun 2021
Viewed by 837
Abstract
The aim of this article is to analyze why there are hindrances to the development of PGI products in Mexico, based on the case study of dairy farming in the Cienega de Chapala, Michoacan. Currently, local dairy production satisfies the demand of a [...] Read more.
The aim of this article is to analyze why there are hindrances to the development of PGI products in Mexico, based on the case study of dairy farming in the Cienega de Chapala, Michoacan. Currently, local dairy production satisfies the demand of a parastatal company, marginally supplies the local consumption of fresh milk and is the supplier of the input for the production of a typical low-value ranchero cheese with local demand. In addition, there was a negative impact of NAFTA on local products, and it persists with the recent USMCA. However, with further development of collective action of local dairy farmers, it is possible to promote PGIs for the regional market by taking advantage of the opportunity offered by the new labeling policy of the current federal government. The methodology is a combination of qualitative and quantitative; 68 interviews were conducted with dairy farmers in the study area, and MFA and ATLAS.ti software were used. The results highlight that socio-environmental problems and market failures are related to the obstacles such as the lack of collective action of dairy farmers and the absence of a local governance system that regulates the market and promotes quality, food safety and sustainable practices in the territory. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Geographical Indication Building Process for Sharr Cheese (Kosovo): “Inside Insights” on Sustainability
Sustainability 2021, 13(10), 5696; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13105696 - 19 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 900
Abstract
This article aims to contribute to the reflection on sustainability in the field of Geographical Indications (GI). GIs are instruments for organizing collective action that have great interpretative flexibility. They are mobilized by a set of qualifying actors of differing natures, with diverse [...] Read more.
This article aims to contribute to the reflection on sustainability in the field of Geographical Indications (GI). GIs are instruments for organizing collective action that have great interpretative flexibility. They are mobilized by a set of qualifying actors of differing natures, with diverse and sometimes divergent interests. For this reason, we focus on how the dimension of sustainability emerges from a collective learning process. Based on the approaches developed by Organization Studies, this article describes and analyzes the process of creating a GI for Sharr Cheese, a Balkan seasonal sheep pastoral cheese highly typical of a mountain range in Kosovo * (this designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence). The authors occupied an embedded research position in this learning process, from 2015 to 2019. The article describes boundary work carried out by the facilitators of collective action (brokers) within experimental spaces during the GI-building process. It analyzes how environmental accountability within the Sharr Cheese GI emerges from a strategic knowledge-brokering process and intensive institutional work. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Designation of Origin Distillates in Mexico: Value Chains and Territorial Development
Sustainability 2021, 13(10), 5496; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13105496 - 14 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1111
Abstract
Geographical Indications (GI) have been used in several countries, mainly in Europe, as tools to promote territorial development. These tools have been adopted in Latin American countries without serious reflection on their scope, limits, and advantages. One of the most relevant elements therein [...] Read more.
Geographical Indications (GI) have been used in several countries, mainly in Europe, as tools to promote territorial development. These tools have been adopted in Latin American countries without serious reflection on their scope, limits, and advantages. One of the most relevant elements therein corresponds to the way in which these assets participate in value chains, whether short or long, which has important implications for governance, benefit distribution, geographic organization of value accumulation processes, among others. With that in mind, we identify the two most relevant Mexican GIs—namely Designation of Origin Tequila (DOT) and Designation of Origin Mezcal (DOM)—to analyze how their value chains have been constructed and their impact on territorial development. We conclude that GIs tend to adopt large value chains to satisfy long-distance demand, but they can have negative territorial effects if institutions are not strong enough to appropriately incorporate territorial stakeholders’ demands. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Protecting Food Cultural Biodiversity: From Theory to Practice. Challenging the Geographical Indications and the Slow Food Models
Sustainability 2021, 13(9), 5265; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13095265 - 08 May 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1229
Abstract
A global expansion in public and private initiatives seeks to strengthen the link between traditional products and sustainable development by creating a niche in the market for these products. Relevant examples are the Geographical Indications and the Slow Food Presidia models. This paper [...] Read more.
A global expansion in public and private initiatives seeks to strengthen the link between traditional products and sustainable development by creating a niche in the market for these products. Relevant examples are the Geographical Indications and the Slow Food Presidia models. This paper compares both types of Origin Food Schemes (OFS) to disclose the main commonalities and differences in their institutionalization, and their complex outcomes on cultural biodiversity (CB), which is a major concern for the sustainability of rural communities. We used underpinning knowledge dynamics as an analytical lens through the cross-comparison of ethnographic findings collected in four case studies of origin cheeses located in France, Italy and Morocco. Our findings suggest that OFS have high potential to defend CB because of their collective and context-dependent approaches. We argue that knowledge and practices mobilized in OFS are the result of power relations and confrontations among local actors, and show how four identified tensions between different forms and types of knowledge differently shape food culture, food technique, perceptions, and representations. In conclusion, the institutional approaches, practices and knowledge dynamics compared in this analysis show six effective ways to link OFS and CB, facilitating the trajectory toward sustainable development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Representativeness in Geographical Indications: A Comparison between the State-Driven and Producer-Driven Systems in Vietnam and France
Sustainability 2021, 13(9), 5056; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13095056 - 30 Apr 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 702
Abstract
This paper explores the issues of representativeness and participation in the collective processes involved in the elaboration of the geographical indications (GI) specifications and the governance of the GI initiatives. The objective is to understand the relationship among collective dynamics, representativeness of relevant [...] Read more.
This paper explores the issues of representativeness and participation in the collective processes involved in the elaboration of the geographical indications (GI) specifications and the governance of the GI initiatives. The objective is to understand the relationship among collective dynamics, representativeness of relevant stakeholders, and the legal frameworks for the protection of GIs. Using a qualitative methodology based on an analysis of six case studies in France and Vietnam, we show the role of the law in shaping the different ways of understanding and implementing the concept of representativeness in the French producer-led and the Vietnamese state-driven approaches to GI protection. In France, the GI specifications result from negotiations among all legitimate stakeholders, which may prove long, complex, and lead to standards that can continue to be challenged after the GI registration. We also argue that the rules for the representation of all GI users in the decision-making processes do not necessarily lead to fairness. In Vietnam, local stakeholders usually have a consultative role under the authority of the State, resulting in their little understanding and low use of the GI. Their empowerment is further hindered by the involvement of state authorities in the management of the producers’ associations. We conclude by discussing in-between solutions to promote the producers’ representation and participation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
Article
The Potential and Contradictions of Geographical Indication and Patrimonization for the Sustainability of Indigenous Communities: A Case of Cordillera Heirloom Rice in the Philippines
Sustainability 2021, 13(8), 4366; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13084366 - 14 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 853
Abstract
In the Montane areas of Cordillera, the Philippines, the IP (indigenous people) have cultivated native rice for generations on their rice terraces, which were designated a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Cultural Heritage site in 1995 and a Food [...] Read more.
In the Montane areas of Cordillera, the Philippines, the IP (indigenous people) have cultivated native rice for generations on their rice terraces, which were designated a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Cultural Heritage site in 1995 and a Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) World Agricultural Heritage site, Globally Important Agricultural Heritage System (GIAHS) in 2011. This heirloom rice was registered as a collective trademark in 2018 and will be registered as a sui generis geographical indication (GI) in the coming years. Based on the author’s interviews with the stakeholders in heirloom rice production conducted in the Philippines in 2019, this article aims to analyze whether GI and patrimonization contribute to the sustainability of the IP communities in Cordillera. This paper demonstrates that GI and patrimonization exhibit both potential and contradictions in ecological, socio-cultural, and economic dimensions of sustainability in the communities, and the compatibility of these dimensions is challenged. The paper concludes that public policies need to pay particular attention to accompanying IP communities when GI and patrimonization are designed to protect them from over-development of the designated area and over-commodification of their certified agri-food products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
The Effects of Institutional Measures: Geographical Indication in Mercosur and the EU
Sustainability 2021, 13(6), 3476; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13063476 - 21 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1204
Abstract
As agri-food markets become increasingly specialized, governments are provoked to provide these products legal support to protect their supply and trade sources. After several treaties, the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement was signed in 1995 as the broadest ever reached. [...] Read more.
As agri-food markets become increasingly specialized, governments are provoked to provide these products legal support to protect their supply and trade sources. After several treaties, the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) Agreement was signed in 1995 as the broadest ever reached. The agreement allowed Geographical Indication (GI) of agri-food products to be targeted. The GIs of Mercosur and the European Union are very different in absolute and relative numbers, showing evidence of significant institutional participation difference. Thus, this work aims to compare the effects of institutional mechanisms promoted by Mercosur and the EU on this market by establishing an analysis framework based on the respective laws and agreements against demographic data. The results show that adherence to TRIPS is a necessary condition but not sufficient for its development. Adherence to the Lisbon Agreement also strengthens the capacity to sustain a substantial GI market. Additionally, the standardization of regulatory treatment and interventionist action helps stabilize and promote institutions in the GI market. Finally, this study concludes from the EU and Mercosur cases that a more robust, promotive and uniform system through its legal basis and dedicated structures results in more trustable institutions and potentially a more abundant market for GI products. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
Article
Trust and Food Quality in the Valorisation of Geographical Indication Initiatives
Sustainability 2021, 13(6), 3168; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13063168 - 13 Mar 2021
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 898
Abstract
This text delves into the elements on which the notion of quality of a product is built. We believe that, in addition to the standards that regulate a given quality seal, there are other elements that consumers link to the excellence that distinguishes [...] Read more.
This text delves into the elements on which the notion of quality of a product is built. We believe that, in addition to the standards that regulate a given quality seal, there are other elements that consumers link to the excellence that distinguishes them. In order to deepen these notions, we have chosen two localised agri-food systems (LAS), the first case corresponds to Iberian acorn-ham from Spain and the second to chorizo from Toluca in Mexico. We resorted to a mixed methodology by combining quantitative and qualitative techniques whereby a study of those food systems in two different socio-political contexts was approached. This methodology has allowed us to identify the importance of informal instruments, based not only on institutionalised certification, but on informal mechanisms such as trust and proximity between producers and consumers. The results of this study show how the food quality categories may be guided from various logics depending on the context, categories, and sort of stakeholders involved. Finally, we propose a categorisation of food quality based on the conceptual framework of trust. This categorisation allows the Geographical Indications (GIs) valorisation initiatives to visualise the elements on which they can be guided to work with the different qualities in their LAS. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Colored Heirloom Corn as a Public Good: The Case of Tlaxcala, Mexico
Sustainability 2021, 13(3), 1507; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13031507 - 01 Feb 2021
Viewed by 952
Abstract
Valorization of territories with diverse cultures and heritage has multiplied in recent years. This study analyzes the case of colored heirloom corn in Tlaxcala, Mexico, as a potential public good associated with the region’s biocultural heritage. The analysis conducted herein relies on a [...] Read more.
Valorization of territories with diverse cultures and heritage has multiplied in recent years. This study analyzes the case of colored heirloom corn in Tlaxcala, Mexico, as a potential public good associated with the region’s biocultural heritage. The analysis conducted herein relies on a wide range of literature from relevant theory, including Geographical Indications, Global Value Chains, Community-Based Entrepreneurship, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development, in order to employ case study methodology. We leverage a novel approach to analyze the heirloom corn chain and its publicness. This chain reveals its status as a potential public good that clearly influences biocultural heritage, which has been preserved by several generations. To preserve colored heirloom corn in Tlaxcala, Mexico, a development strategy is needed that links actors and resources, involves the public sector, and furthers expansion of the private sector. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
Article
The Potential of Geographical Indications (GI) to Enhance Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Japan: Overview and Insights from Japan GI Mishima Potato
Sustainability 2021, 13(2), 961; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13020961 - 19 Jan 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1475
Abstract
Geographical indications (GIs) have recently become an important tool for Japanese agricultural policy, particularly after the adoption of a “sui generis” certification system in 2015. In the same year, the United Nations proposed a common agenda with 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The [...] Read more.
Geographical indications (GIs) have recently become an important tool for Japanese agricultural policy, particularly after the adoption of a “sui generis” certification system in 2015. In the same year, the United Nations proposed a common agenda with 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The present paper addresses the potential of GIs to enhance SDGs in Japan. First, we examine existing knowledge on GI inception, which consists in both government reports and research surveys. We show that these studies mostly focus on SDGs related to economic growth, and on social issues raised by the registration process. Then, as an exploration of potential impacts of GIs on the full set of SDGs, we study the case of Mishima Bareisho Potato GI, on the basis of interviews and participatory observation. From local stakeholders’ point of view, Mishima Potato GI can contribute to at least nine SDGs at all the production, transformation and commercialization stages. The SDG framework is useful to reveal some contributions seldomly considered in GI studies but which matter for local people, for example, the employment of disabled people or nutritional education. Finally, we discuss how these new insights can contribute to the debate on the potential role and limits of GIs for sustainable development in Japan. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Product Qualification as a Means of Identifying Sustainability Pathways for Place-Based Agri-Food Systems: The Case of the GI Corsican Grapefruit (France)
Sustainability 2020, 12(17), 7148; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12177148 - 01 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1414
Abstract
Existing frameworks offer a holistic way to evaluate a food system based on sustainability indicators but can fall short of offering clear direction. To analyze the sustainability of a geographical indication (GI) system, we adopt a product-centered approach that begins with understanding the [...] Read more.
Existing frameworks offer a holistic way to evaluate a food system based on sustainability indicators but can fall short of offering clear direction. To analyze the sustainability of a geographical indication (GI) system, we adopt a product-centered approach that begins with understanding the product qualification along the value-chain. We use the case of the GI Corsican grapefruit focusing on understanding the quality criteria priorities from the orchard to the store. Our results show that certain compromises written into the Code of Practices threaten the system’s sustainability. Today the GI allows the fruit to be harvested before achieving peak maturity and expectations on visual quality lead to high levels of food waste. Its primary function is to help penetrate mainstream export markets and to optimize labor and infrastructure. Analyzing the stakeholders’ choices of qualification brings to light potential seeds for change in the short run such as later springtime harvests, diversification of the marketing channels, and more leniency on the fruit’s aesthetics. These solutions lead us to reflect on long-term pathways to sustainable development such as reinforcing the fruit’s typicality, reducing food waste, reorganizing human resources, and embedding the fruit into its territory and the local culture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
The EU Food Label ‘Protected Geographical Indication’: Economic Implications and Their Spatial Dimension
Sustainability 2020, 12(14), 5503; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12145503 - 08 Jul 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1683
Abstract
This study analyses the economic effects of the EU policy on the protection of origin. The focus is on three types of food products with Protected Geographical Indication (PGI), whose reference areas are located in the Free State of Bavaria: Beer (Bayerisches Bier [...] Read more.
This study analyses the economic effects of the EU policy on the protection of origin. The focus is on three types of food products with Protected Geographical Indication (PGI), whose reference areas are located in the Free State of Bavaria: Beer (Bayerisches Bier PGI), asparagus (Franken-Spargel PGI, Schrobenhausener Spargel PGI), and carp (Aischgründer Karpfen PGI, Oberpfälzer Karpfen PGI). The study is based on secondary statistical analysis and a series of expert interviews. The results show positive effects on sales mainly for beer on international markets, and positive effects on price mainly for carp on the local and regional levels. All in all, we see that protection of origin stabilizes and supports the economic trajectory of its product. This study also shows that its economic effects vary widely: Firstly, price and sales effects are not automatic and differ in intensity; and secondly, the spatial dimensions of the economic effects exhibit different patterns. The primarily price-related effects at the local–regional level for carp (and to some extent for asparagus) are categorized as local effects (type A). The sales effect at the global level for beer is categorized as type B (export effect). Finally, this study postulates further potential forms of ‘price and sales geographies’. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Place-Based Pathways to Sustainability: Exploring Alignment between Geographical Indications and the Concept of Agroecology Territories in Wales
Sustainability 2020, 12(12), 4890; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12124890 - 15 Jun 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2344
Abstract
Geographical Indications (GIs) are regarded as important endogenous rural development mechanisms by the European Union. GIs have proven successful for some producers in some regions, delivering higher added value and safeguarding a product’s identity and heritage through the notion of terroir. Within the [...] Read more.
Geographical Indications (GIs) are regarded as important endogenous rural development mechanisms by the European Union. GIs have proven successful for some producers in some regions, delivering higher added value and safeguarding a product’s identity and heritage through the notion of terroir. Within the context of a gradual “greening” of GIs, this paper opens up questions about what potential they might have for transitions to agroecology territories, which are spaces engaged in a transition process towards sustainable agri-food systems. Using the Food and Agricultural Organization’s 10 elements of agroecology as a lens, we discuss whether GIs can serve as levers in delivering sustainable agri-food transitions, drawing on the case of the devolved nation of Wales. We base our narrative on a content analysis of GI product specification documents and data from interviews with GI stakeholders. Our case study illustrates that the discourse within the regulatory framework of some Welsh GIs has shifted from one of technicality towards the integration of some agroecology elements in more recent GI product specifications. In this respect, we argue that there is evidence of a “first generation” and “second generation” assortment of GIs in Wales. However, any potential for levering an overall transition within this scheme towards an agroecology territory remains constrained by the piecemeal embedding of agroecology. The incorporation of agroecology is emerging primarily from the ground-up—driven by independent organizational and place-based collective action, but unaccompanied, as yet, by any parallel shift amongst supporting administrative and regulatory authorities. We also discuss the importance of reflexive governance if GIs are to be viable pathways for sustainability transitions. As such, the capacity for GIs to facilitate quality-led place-based food systems that enhance increasingly threatened environmental resources is contingent upon stakeholders adopting a territorial, reflexive governance approach. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
The Impact of Geographical Indications on Sustainable Rural Development: A Case Study of the Vietnamese Cao Phong Orange
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4711; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114711 - 09 Jun 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1450
Abstract
This study investigates the relationship between geographical indications (GIs) and sustainable rural development in Vietnam, and analyzes the case study of the Cao Phong orange. Qualitative data were collected from interviews with Vietnamese policy-makers and orange growers to investigate the role of the [...] Read more.
This study investigates the relationship between geographical indications (GIs) and sustainable rural development in Vietnam, and analyzes the case study of the Cao Phong orange. Qualitative data were collected from interviews with Vietnamese policy-makers and orange growers to investigate the role of the government of Vietnam in designing and implementing GIs, as well as the involvement of local producers taking advantage of GIs, in order to identify how and to what extent GI protection affects sustainable rural development. The results show that GIs have positively contributed to sustainable rural development in Vietnam; however, some problems remain. This study concludes with policy implications for promoting GIs and sustainable rural development in Vietnam. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
Article
Are Protected Geographical Indications Evolving Due to Environmentally Related Justifications? An Analysis of Amendments in the Fruit and Vegetable Sector in the European Union
Sustainability 2020, 12(9), 3571; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12093571 - 27 Apr 2020
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 1756
Abstract
Protected designations of origin (PDO) and Protected geographical indications (PGI) in the European Union have been recognized through a sound legal framework for more than three decades. We are recently witnessing an increased number of amendments to the product specifications of registered PDO/PGI. [...] Read more.
Protected designations of origin (PDO) and Protected geographical indications (PGI) in the European Union have been recognized through a sound legal framework for more than three decades. We are recently witnessing an increased number of amendments to the product specifications of registered PDO/PGI. This paper aims to understand how PDO/PGI for the fruit and vegetables product class have evolved. Until 31 December 2018, there were 379 PDO/PGI registered under the fruit and vegetables product class and 81 amendments approved. We designed a coding guideline to: (i) analyze all the amendments to the product specifications; (ii) identify the type of rules that were modified; (iii) find out whether the amendments resulted in more flexible or more restrictive rules, and (iv) the respective justifications given by producers. We designed a database to manage all the information. Overall, amendments brought more flexible rules (particularly in Italy and Spain), while France showed a more diversified situation. Concerning the justifications stated by producers for amending the product specification, market changes, available new technology, and strengthening product quality were the most important, while environmental concerns were less relevant. Then, we in-depth analyzed the amendments that were explicitly justified with environmental reasons. The analysis showed only a light movement towards more environment-friendly rules, although environmental justifications were often used “indirectly”, as a means to achieve better marketing competitiveness, meeting new market demand and reducing production costs. These results seem consistent with previous studies, which indicated market forces as a primary motivation to amend product specifications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Geographical Indications and Price Volatility Dynamics of Lamb Prices in Spain
Sustainability 2020, 12(7), 3048; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12073048 - 10 Apr 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1421
Abstract
For decades, food quality standards have attracted the interest of governance institutions and regulation authorities, who have responded to the increasing and demanding societal challenges. In addition, the open debate on significant variability and unusually high levels of agrifood prices recorded in 2007 [...] Read more.
For decades, food quality standards have attracted the interest of governance institutions and regulation authorities, who have responded to the increasing and demanding societal challenges. In addition, the open debate on significant variability and unusually high levels of agrifood prices recorded in 2007 and later in 2011 affect the behavior of the chain actors involved. As an attempt to bring together these wide concerns within a quantitative framework, a comparative analysis of the performance of the price volatility dynamics allowing for asymmetric behavior along the supply chain of a protected geographical indication (PGI)-certified lamb and its corresponding non-PGI counterpart, both located in the same region of Spain, was undertaken using weekly farm-retail prices for the period 2011–2018. The results indicate the existence of significant volatilities and an asymmetric transmission mechanism along the non-PGI-certified lamb supply chain, whereas the PGI-certified supply chain is impacted by volatility effects, yet characterized by symmetric behavior, which may suggest a high degree of relative market efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Article
Geographical Indication to Build up Resilient Rural Economies: A Case Study from Ghana
Sustainability 2020, 12(5), 2052; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12052052 - 06 Mar 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1817
Abstract
This paper deals with Geographical Indications (GI) as a critical strategy aimed to boost agri-food local supply chain and rural development. The main concern of this work, therefore, is to verify how the identification of these products and establishment of GI systems can [...] Read more.
This paper deals with Geographical Indications (GI) as a critical strategy aimed to boost agri-food local supply chain and rural development. The main concern of this work, therefore, is to verify how the identification of these products and establishment of GI systems can propel sustainable development in local areas in Africa. Two assumptions are at the basis of our paper: viable GI systems can be established in Africa, and the establishment of a GI system can stimulate rural development. In order to clarify the process of GI setting up and valorization, we will test GI virtuous circle and the rural web, with the purpose of exploring the multiple dimensions (endogeneity, social capital, sustainability, novelty, institutional arrangements, governance of markets) interfering in the process at both the agri-food supply chain and rural context levels of analysis. The analysis is applied to the shea butter production in Ghana and will employ primary data. Questionnaires and interviews were administered in the study area (Yendi Municipality of Ghana) to gather both qualitative and quantitative data. Our analysis confirms the potentialities of the shea butter as GI, by underlying its engine for the development of local rural communities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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Review

Jump to: Research

Review
Understanding the Real-World Impact of Geographical Indications: A Critical Review of the Empirical Economic Literature
Sustainability 2020, 12(22), 9434; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12229434 - 12 Nov 2020
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 1434
Abstract
In our study, we tried to collect empirical studies focusing on the economic impact of Geographical Indications (GIs). Using a systematic literature review approach, we investigated three different aspects: market size, price premium and impacts on rural development. Based on the findings of [...] Read more.
In our study, we tried to collect empirical studies focusing on the economic impact of Geographical Indications (GIs). Using a systematic literature review approach, we investigated three different aspects: market size, price premium and impacts on rural development. Based on the findings of studies both from the grey and academic literature, the results are quite mixed. Though the number of GI-related empirical studies has risen in recent years, there is a lack of economic data to support policies related to GIs, even in the European Union (EU), where the most important GI system exists. Overall, it is impossible to draw any general conclusions about the economic impact of GIs. Some countries have remarkable GI market size, and some GI products have a determinative role in both domestic and export markets; however, it is not general. Again, some particular GI products of some regions could gain significant price premiums, but due to the associated higher production costs and unequal distribution in the value chain, it might not result in higher producer incomes. The most conflicting empirical results were found in how GIs can contribute to regional prosperity, as evidences of the harmful effects of GIs on rural development were also identified. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geographical Indications, Public Goods, and Sustainable Development)
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