Now they have reached an agreement with Jamaica that only Suisse (VdT) Absinthe can be sold to Jamaica and Jamaica recognizes these bogus regional claims. In short Politricks as usual. No protection to absinthe at all just an politico-economic ploy to control the market entirely and everything else be damned.
The French have claimed an IGP for Pontarlier Absinthe which extends to regions bordering the famous absinthe producing region with it's just as valid NAY more historical contributions and claim to the beloved drink.
This statement about what absinthe can be sold in Jamaica is correct if everything in the Swiss-Jamaican agreement holds up. We don't even know if it is in full force and effect yet. It was just signed September of this year. The fact is that the Swiss IGP which would drive all this is not even in effect yet and will probably not be for several years (they are still listening to objections and appeals). As far as "Politricks" or "politico-economic ploys" go, I think folks here should be careful with what they state (we were when we wrote our position statement). Just because it seems obvious to you that there is something nefarious going on, that may not be the case. There are those in Switzerland who think their PGI will have no effect outside their own country and I'm sure at least some of them are genuine in that sentiment.
The "Pontarlier Absinthe" IGP contains the requirement of a minimum 20 milligrams per liter of thujone, so it's not without its flaws either.
So if the Swiss in Vdt has gained IGP over the term 'absinthe' which excludes Oliver Matter products in Kallnach, why is the current Duplais line labelled as Absinthe? Plus others outside of Vdt?
And so despite the Swiss VdT group gaining IGP on the term absinthe, correct me if Im wrong, producers outside of VdT continue to label their bottles as 'Absinthe'
The accurate answer to this is because the Swiss PGI is not yet in effect. If it does go into effect as written, we will then have to see if the Swiss government allows a producer outside the VdT to make "absinthe" for export only. Any guessing right now is only that... guessing.
Spirit deals between nations aren't unusual. We struck a similar deal with Brazil a couple of years ago: Brazil won't make bourbon and the US won't make cachaça.
Remember that the protections are of the names, not the product types. Actually, Brazil can make a product identical to Bourbon and the US can make a product identical to cachaca. They're just agreeing to not allow use of the names. That is because "Bourbon" is recognized as a specific type of product from the US and cachaca is a specific type of product from Brazil.
The biggest problem with the Swiss PGI, in my opinion, is the protection of the generic name "absinthe" instead of a protection of something meaning "Absinthe from the Val-de-Travers". I'm betting when this whole Swiss thing gets fleshed out, that's where they will end up. There's got to be someone rational in that country.
... The first step down a slippery slope.
And why we wrote our statement of our position on this. The Swiss PGI, if it passes as is, sets up the potential for a good deal of "slippery slope" events that could be very bad for the category of absinthe. It was time for us to officially get our voice in the conversation because it is far easier to try to influence the outcome of events before they are finalized than to try to undo them after the fact. I think it is prudent, however, for everyone to remember that to have a productive discourse about these things you need the people on the other side of the conversation. I'm not thinking that stridency or accusation is the way to engage the people we need involved to arrive at an acceptable outcome.