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Japan Patent OfficeJPO Compiles a Booklet Titled Regional Brands in JAPAN 2016 - Regional Collective Trademarks

In April 2006, the Japan Patent Office (JPO) introduced the Regional Collective Trademark System, aiming to protect and promote regional brands. To further popularize and utilize the System, the JPO has compiled a booklet titled Regional Brands in JAPAN 2016 -Regional Collective Trademarks, which includes an explanation of the System, specific examples of rightful owners who have successfully utilized such trademarks, and the 587 trademarks that had been registered with the JPO as of the end of December 2015.

1. Outline of the System

The Regional Collective Trademark System aims to protect trademarks composed of a combination of a place name and a product or service name, such as Oma Maguro (tuna fish), Yonezawa Gyu (beef), Edo Kiriko (cut glass), and Atami Onsen (hotel with spa). Registered entities under the System, which was introduced in April 2006, have been limited to certain associations established under special laws, such as business cooperatives. However, the eligibility to file applications for the registration of trademarks under the System was revised to broadly include commerce and industry associations, chambers of commerce and industry, and NPOs, and this revision came into force on August 1, 2014.

As of March 7, 2016, 592 Regional Collective Trademarks had been registered.

Top 3 fields in terms of the number of registered trademarks

  1. Craftwork, bags, tableware, miscellaneous goods (80 trademarks)
  2. Beef, chicken, and other meats (58)
  3. Textiles, clothing, fabric products, footwear (57)

Top 3 prefectures in terms of the number of registered trademarks

  1. Kyoto Prefecture (62 trademarks)
  2. Hyogo Prefecture (35)
  3. Gifu Prefecture (29)

2. Outline of the booklet

The booklet includes nine case examples of rightful owners who have successfully utilized their trademarks, mainly focusing on the opinions of such owners who have actually felt benefits brought about by the registration of such trademarks, for goods including Katsuura Tantanmen (sesame and chili ramen) in Chiba Prefecture, which was selected for the Grand Prix for the B-1 Grand Prix –Eat up local B-grade gourmet!–. In addition, the booklet introduces 587 case examples in total, including 17 newly-registered trademarks with descriptions of the characteristics of the trademarked goods and services such as Shodoshima Olive Oil in Kagawa Prefecture, which is the first regional collective trademark to be registered for a non-profit organization.
The JPO expects that people who endeavor to promote regional brands will find it helpful to refer to the booklet when utilizing the System.

The booklet is downloadable from the following JPO webpage. If you wish to access a paper version, please contact the division in charge using the contact information listed on the webpage.
[Note] Available only in Japanese
For consultations on the System, please contact the counters at the Patent Offices of the Regional Bureaus of Economy, Trade and Industry or the Trademark Division of the JPO.
JPO website: Site Link (in Japanese)


Successful examples of rightful owners who have utilized Regional Collective Trademarks

Release date

March 7, 2016

Division in Charge

Office for Promoting Regional Collective Trademarks and Retail-Service Trademarks, Trademark Division, Trademark and Customer Relations Department, JPO

Related Information

Japanese Regional Information

Last updated:2016-03-10
Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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