Newsletter – August / September 2023

  • New Zealand Law Awards Nomination
  • Incorporated Societies Act 2022
  • Impacts of NZ – EU trade agreement on GIs
  • My time at Zone – Ana our French Intern

New Zealand Law Awards Nomination

We are excited to announce that we have been selected as a finalist for Intellectual Property Specialist Law Firm of the Year 2023 for the 9th year in a row. We are also an Excellence Awardee for 2023. We would like to thank everyone who voted for us, and we look forward to attending the awards ceremony in late November.

Incorporated Societies Act 2022

New legislation governing Incorporated Societies called the Incorporated Societies Act 2022 is set to come fully into force in October this year.
Incorporated Societies must reregister under the new Act between 5 October 2023 and 5 April 2026 or they will cease to exist. A number of key changes provided by the new Act mean an updated constitution will be necessary.  Please be aware that it generally takes a minimum of 6 months to prepare and adopt a new constitution.
If you would like help with this, please contact us.

Impacts of NZ – EU trade agreement on GIs

New Zealand and the European Union concluded negotiations on a free trade agreement (FTA) in June 2022 and the agreement was recently signed, on 9 July 2023.

There are some important changes with relation Geographical Indications (GI’s).

  • New Zealand’s GI regime, which currently only covers wines and spirits, will be extended to include agricultural products, foodstuffs, and other beverages.
  • New Zealand and the European Union will protect a list of each other’s GIs. This means that certain European Union protected GI’s will be reserved for the use of the European producers. This includes terms like “feta” and “sherry.” Over 1,900 EU GI’s will be protected in New Zealand.
  • However, there will be some exceptions in place for prior users who previously used terms such as “Parmesan” in good faith.
  • Certain New Zealand GI’s being reserved for local producers. Twenty-three New Zealand wine GI’s have been protected. This includes Marlborough, Central Otago, Waiheke Island and Martinborough. These protections will be phased in over a 5–9-year period.
  • Both jurisdictions can nominate further names for protection.

If you would like any advice about protecting your IP on food and beverages, or any of the above changes, please contact us.

My time at Zone – Ana our French Intern

For the last two months, our firm had the lovely Ana Robert from France interning with us to gain more knowledge and a deeper understanding on IP Law. Ana is currently in her second year of study for a double bachelor’s degree in Law and Applied foreign languages in English and Chinese.

Whilst Ana was interning with us, she undertook legal research, updated databases, assisted with drafting legal documents, and assisted with other administrative tasks. She spent her spare time exploring Wellington and other parts of New Zealand to see our beautiful country. We wish Ana all the best with her studies and hope that she will visit us again!

Ana - French Intern