New Delhi: Tirupati laddoo offered to devotees at the Lord Venkateswara Temple in Andhra Pradesh has been awarded geographical copyright.
This bars others from naming or marketing the sweetmeat preparation under the same name.
The Tirumala-Tirupati Devasthanams, a trust that administers the Venkateswara Temple in the Tirumala hills, had applied for Geographical Indication (GI) with the Chennai-based Geographical Indication Registry in March 2008.
“The GI certificate for Tirupati Laddoo has been granted to the trust (TTD). The Laddoo is now protected under law and nobody can copy it,” Assistant Registrar of Trade Marks and GI, GL Verma told PTI.
Under GI, the right to marketing a product is tied to a definite geographical territory and the manufactured goods should be produced or processed or prepared in that territory.
Popular items that have been granted GI tag world over include Champagne and Tequilla, and the procedure helps in preventing others from surreptitiously exploiting a brand name that has evolved over a period of time.
The GI status provides legal protection and facilitates for action in case of infringement. GIs are covered as an element of Intellectual Property Rights.
Controller-General of Patents, Designs, and Trade Marks, P H Kurian, also confirmed granting of GI status to Tirupati Laddu.
TTD, however, couldn't be reached for comments.
Tirupati Laddoo is the popular name for Sri Vari Laddu that is offered as prasadam (sacred food) to the devotees after they worship Lord Venkateswara.
“The size and flavour are typical characteristics of Tirupati Laddoo. Tirupati Laddoos are not produced anywhere in the world and are very unique in terms of quality, reputation and other characteristics, which go into its making,” TTD had claimed in its application.
Primarily there are two types of laddoos - small and big. A small laddoo weighs about 174 grams, whereas the big ones weigh between 700 and 720 grams.
In the past, GI tag has been awarded to a number of Indian products or goods including Darjeeling Tea, Madhubani Paintings and Goa Feni.