Protection of Cuisine under Intellectual Property Law: A Global Perspective

Ghose, Anuttama ; Ali, SM Aamir


We have observed for a very long time that, in various instances, food and recipes are considered the subject matter of art. Different chefs and restaurants have received global recognition for their creativity and talent. Their creation forms an integral part of intellectual assets, which are exploited commercially. Although in popular opinion, the culinary industry is often considered a representation of derivative art, however, with the advancement of culinary techniques and creativity of chefs across the world, various forms of intellectual property laws are claimed by these proprietors and stakeholders in order to protect their unique creations from encroachment. Signature dishes and the unique ambiance of a restaurant are always the subject matter of well-known controversies. In this article, the author makes an attempt to analyze various culinary conflicts observed across the world and examines the various possibilities of protecting the artistic arrangement or plating of their dishes under traditional as well as the non-traditional scope of intellectual property laws. The article discusses the statutory and judicial pronouncements pertinent to this issue in the light of notable principles of Copyright, Trademark,Trade Secret, and Patent laws, along with ramifications involved in safeguarding the same. The findings and suggestions provided in this research, in the end, put forward the efficacy of confidential agreements and the requirement of strict statutory provisions on trade secret laws to protect the unique creation of culinary industries.


Cuisine; Food & Beverages; Intellectual Property Law; Patent; Trade Secrets; Taste Mark

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