Napa Valley Vintners Joins Prominent International Network of Geographic Indications



5/1/2012 - St Helena, CA--The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV), the non-profit trade association representing 430 Napa Valley wineries, has joined the Organization for an International Geographical Indications Network (oriGIn).

Established in 2003 and headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, oriGIn is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that advocates internationally for more effective legal protection for Geographic Indications (GIs). The oriGIn membership is comprised of approximately 350 associations of producers from more than 40 countries.

For more than a decade, NVV has blazed the trail in securing global protection for its famous name, Napa Valley, and thereby its brand integrity. "Consumers around the world need to be assured that when it says 'Napa Valley' on the wine label, the wine truly comes from this extraordinary place," said Linda Reiff, executive director of the NVV. "We've witnessed the misuse of the Napa name domestically and internationally," Reiff said. "That’s unfair to the vintners of Napa Valley who have worked very hard to achieve recognition for their consistent, quality wines, as well as to the consumers of our wine who rely on truthfulness and accuracy when it comes to information on wine labels."

In 2007, NVV successfully secured GI status for Napa Valley in the European Union, making it the first non-EU product of any sort to secure such protection there. In the years since, NVV has successfully campaigned for GI status in India and Thailand. The NVV is currently and aggressively pursuing GI status in many countries spanning the globe.

"We have a history of partnering with likeminded organizations, so this was a logical next-step for us," said Pat Stotesbery, chairman of the NVV's Napa Name Protection Committee and proprietor of Ladera Vineyards. The NVV was a founder of the Joint Declaration to Protect Wine Place and Origin partnership in 2005, along with Champagne, Porto and Jerez, Oregon, Walla Walla, and Washington State. That partnership now features 15 of the world's premier winegrowing regions and continues to grow.

Last fall, the Declaration partners released results of a poll that showed American wine consumers overwhelmingly consider where the region a wine comes from is an important factor when buying a bottle of wine and 96 percent of the respondents said that consumers deserve to know that the location where wine grapes are grown is accurately stated on wine labels. Additionally, nearly all of the 1000 participants in the Public Opinion Strategies poll supported establishing worldwide standards for all winemakers that would require that they accurately state the location where wine grapes are grown on wine labels.

"We are proud to welcome the NVV into our global network, oriGIn, where GIs from all over the world exchange their experience and coordinate their strategies. We will greatly benefit from the participation of the NVV," said Ramón Gonzalez Figueroa, president of oriGIn and director general of the Consejo Regulador del Tequila (CRT). "We are glad to note that more and more consumers realize origin affects their quality of life. However, a lot remains to be done to ensure accurate information is provided to consumers in the global market," concluded Gonzalez Figueroa.

The Napa Valley Vintners is the non-profit trade association responsible for promoting and protecting the Napa Valley appellation as the premier winegrowing region. From seven founding members in 1944, today the association represents 430 Napa Valley wineries and collectively is a leader in the world-wide wine industry. To learn more about our region and its legendary American wines, visit

Contact: Terry Hall, Communications Director 707-968-4217


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