In September 2015 the Swiss Federal Council adopted the new regulations surrounding the “Swissness” package. The measure is intended to strengthen the protection of the “Made in Switzerland” designation and the Swiss Cross domestically, with a view to law enforcement abroad. The new “Swissness” legislation comes into force on 1 January 2017.
The “Swissness” legislation introduces new criteria making it possible to determine more precisely the geographical origin of a product or service; in other words, the law stipulates the point at which a product can legitimately claim to be of Swiss origin. Swiss products and services are associated with exclusivity, tradition and quality, with their good reputation inspiring confidence in the product or service in question and ultimately influencing the consumer’s buying decision. Studies revealed that “Swiss made” is still seen as very valuable in the global business world. The main purpose of the regulation is to prevent freeriding on the Swissness-label when products are far away from being substantially manufactured in Switzerland.
The most important changes introduced by the “Swissness” legislation concern:
- the use of a Swiss designation of origin for natural producs;
- the use of a Swiss designation of origin for foodstuffs;
- the use of a Swiss designation of origin for industrial products;
- the use of a Swiss designation of origin for for services
- the register for designations of origin and geographical designations for non-agricultural products;
- the protection of the Swiss coat of arms and other official signs;
- a Swiss-made regulation for watches.
“Swissness” for natural products:
Natural products are products that are not processed, such as vegetable, mineral water, fish etc. According to the new legislation, they have sufficient Swissness if they are reaped or caught in Switzerland.
“Swissness” for foodstuffs:
Foodstuffs, including processed natural products, acquire sufficient Swissness if at least 80% of the weight of ingredients that are available in Switzerland are of Swiss origin
“Swissness” for industrial products:
Industrial products acquire sufficient Swissness if at least 60% of the manufacturing costs must occur in Switzerland.
“Swissness” for services:
Services are to be considered as Swiss made if the service provider has its registered seat and an effective administrative office in Switzerland.
Register for designations of origin and geographical designations for non-agricultural products
The new “Swissness” package provides the possibility for representative groups of producers to register designations of origin and geographical designations for non-agricultural products in a new register of geographical marks.
Swiss coat of arms
The Swiss coat of arms principally remains reserved for the Confederation. Those companies that have been using the Swiss coat of arms for decades as part of their company symbol to label Swiss goods and services, will be exceptionally accorded, upon request, a right of continued use.
Watches are to be considered as Swiss made, if at least 60% of the costs of the end product, not just the watch workings, are incurred in Switzerland. Additionally, the technical development work must be carried out in Switzerland.
Further in formations are available at the IGE official site
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