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Abstract

A key objective of EU trade policy is to obtain wider protection for its specialty foods, known as Geographical Indications (GIs). While the WTO provides some protection for GIs under Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS), the EU has successfully considered additional protection for its GIs a red line in recent Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). FTAs are negotiated by the Commission but require member state approval. Given that both Greece and Italy have threatened not to ratify CETA over insufficient GI protection, GIs clearly matter. This article provides and analyzes new data on GI protection in 11 recent EU trade agreements. It finds that EU FTAs are more likely to protect GIs with higher sales values and from countries in the South of Europe, where GIs are highly salient because of gastronationalism. These findings illustrate how economic and political considerations shape and enable EU policy exports.

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