Appellation of Origin Brands in China

Appellation of Origin Brands in China

Yongge Niu (Sichuan University, China) and Cheng Lu Wang (University of New Haven, USA)
Copyright: © 2014 |Pages: 10
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6242-1.ch015
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Abstract

Appellation of origin brands are largely based on the geographical characteristics where the products may possess certain unique features due to suitable climate and abundant natural resources, but are also derived from historical heritage that a particular place is well known for its unique product and production. Therefore, such brands are typically named based on two components: the geographic designation and the product. For centuries, it has become a common practice in China that a producer uses its product place part of its brand name. This chapter provides a comprehensive overview of the Chinese Appellation of Origin Brands (AOBs), particularly exploring their unique characteristics, their development process, and the environmental factors that influence their brand performance.
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Characteristics Of Chinese Aobs

The unique characteristic of Chinese AOBs stems from the legal and commercial environment in China, where lacks specific Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) laws that serve to protect Chinese brand names. Consequently any enterprises or producers in the region can use the brand name without violation of the copyright of the original brand. The main objective of an AOB is to differentiate and protect products or brands against imitation from enterprises in other regions, and to provide quality guarantees for consumers. While appellations in Europe and North America are mainly in food sector, particularly focused on wine industry, the AOB in China is far more beyond the food industry and has been extensively penetrated into five product categories, including natural products, special agriculture products, processed food, ceramics and folk crafts, covering 33 provinces and autonomous administrative divisions. These widely distributed AOBs, many of them have earned nationwide or worldwide reputation, reflect a long historical development of unique Chinese products, which demonstrated wisdom and sophisticated crafting skills in different regions. Many AOBs are among the oldest Chinese brands with hundred or even thousand years of history and therefore can be said as the living fossil in studying brand development in the world, particularly in emerging markets. Based on our research, we summarize the major characteristics of Chinese AOBs below:

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