We are fully supportive of the examination guide published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (US PTO) titled "Marks Including Geographic Wording that Does not Indicate Geographic Origin of Cheeses and Processed Meats" (the Exam Guide).
First, as fully described in the Background statement published with the Exam Guide, the US PTO correctly notes that two federal agencies, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), have already provided through their standards of identity strong indications regarding various terms these agencies consider generic. The issuance of this Exam Guide will assist in providing consistent recognition across Federal agencies, including the US PTO, of the generic nature of these various meat and cheese terms.
Second, the Exam Guide further requires that the identification of the goods be amended to include the generic term that is mentioned in the applied-for mark to ensure that the registration of the applied-for mark applies only to those products that satisfy the production requirements for that product. This, too, is a positive development in that it makes clear, by including the generic 🙂 🙂
Frank Z. Hellwig
Castlewood Strategies LLC