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Trade and terroir. The political economy of the world’s first geographical indications

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  • Meloni, Giulia
  • Swinnen, Johan

Abstract

The world’s first geographical indications (GIs) were in the wine sector and focused on the delineation of the location of production, the ‘terroirs’: the Burgundy wines in the fifteenth century, the Port wines and Chianti wines in the eighteenth century, and the Champagne wines in the early twentieth century. We analyze the causes for the introduction of these GIs (‘terroirs’) and for changes in their delineation (expansion) later on. Trade played a very important role in the creation of the ‘terroirs’ but the mechanisms through which trade stimulated GIs varied. For the Port and Chianti GIs it was exports to foreign markets (Britain) that were crucial; for Burgundy it was domestic trade to Paris; and for the Champagne GI it was not exports but pressure from wine imports and new wine regions that played a crucial role. For the expansions of the GIs later in history, other factors seem to have been more important. Expansions of the GIs in the years and centuries after their introduction followed (1) major changes in political power; (2) the spread of a new philosophy in liberal and free markets across Europe; (3) and infrastructure investments which opened up markets and made exports cheaper from “new” producers.

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  • Meloni, Giulia & Swinnen, Johan, 2018. "Trade and terroir. The political economy of the world’s first geographical indications," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 1-20.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jfpoli:v:81:y:2018:i:c:p:1-20
    DOI: 10.1016/j.foodpol.2018.10.003
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    Cited by:

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    2. Susana López‐Bayón & Marta Fernández‐Barcala & Manuel González‐Díaz, 2020. "In search of agri‐food quality for wine: Is it enough to join a geographical indication?," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 36(4), pages 568-590, October.
    3. Catherine Haeck & Giulia Meloni & Jo Swinnen, 2018. "The Value of Terroir. A historical analysis of the Bordeaux and Champagne geographical indications," Working Papers of Department of Economics, Leuven 634338, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB), Department of Economics, Leuven.
    4. Guilherme Silva Fracarolli, 2021. "Mapping Online Geographical Indication: Agrifood Products on E-Commerce Shelves of Mercosur and the European Union," Economies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(2), pages 1-20, May.
    5. M. Huysmans, 2019. "Exporting protection : EU trade agreements, geographical indications, and gastronationalism," Working Papers 19-26, Utrecht School of Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Political economy; Wine trade; Regulations; Geographical Indications;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • F10 - International Economics - - Trade - - - General
    • K39 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Other
    • L51 - Industrial Organization - - Regulation and Industrial Policy - - - Economics of Regulation
    • N53 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - Europe: Pre-1913
    • Q18 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Policy; Food Policy

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