California’s Napa Valley the First External Wine Place to Get Geographic Indication (GI) Status in China 

Napa Valley, an officially designated American Viticultural Area (“AVA”) in California, was recently granted Geographic Indication (GI) status in China by the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine of the PRC, making it the first wine producing region outside China to get such recognition.

Under the mandate of the GI status, wines bearing the label of Napa Valley are required to have at least 85% of their volume coming from grapes of the region, which to date features more than 450 wineries that grow grape varieties including Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Merlot, and Zinfandel

The grant of the GI represents a guarantee of origin, on the one hand to prevent consumer deception and confusion caused by illegitimate use of the label, and on the other hand to avoid undermining of the genuine products’ reputation for quality associated with the AVA, which is attributable to environmental conditions specific to the region, processing art and winemaking skills.