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Application and registration criteria

The registration of place name Geographical Indications (GIs) for wines, such as Marlborough or Hawke’s Bay:

  • reinforces the quality and reputation of those products
  • makes it easier for users to enforce the relevant GI in New Zealand, and
  • enables users to better promote and protect their wines in overseas markets.


Applications to register a GI for a wine or spirit will be made to the Registrar of Registered Geographical Indications.

We'll examine the GI application to determine if it’s registrable.

Applicants for New Zealand GIs will need to provide us with formal evidence that establishes that the particular quality, reputation or other characteristic of the wine or spirit that the GI identifies is essentially attributable to its geographical origin.

Registration criteria

Generally speaking a GI will not be registrable if:

  • use or registration of the GI is likely to be offensive
  • it's identical to a registered GI
  • it's identical or similar to a registered trade mark
  • it's identical to the customary name of a grape variety
  • it's the common name in New Zealand for the goods it identifies (for example, 'Vodka' for spirits)
  • for a foreign GI, it's no longer in use or no longer protected in the country of origin.