The Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne which represents growers, producers, and merchants of wines from France’s Champagne region has failed in a bid to stop Melbourne’s Champagne Jayne aka Jayne Powell from using social media to widely promote her services in relation to sparkling wine.
The Champagne production area lies about 150km to the east of Paris, consisting of 34,000 hectares of vineyards spread across 319 villages (crus), which have the right to make Champagne, of which 17 rank as “Grands Crus” and 44 rank as “Premiers Crus”. There are four main growing regions: The Montagne de Reims, Vallée de la Marne, Côte des Blancs and Côte des Bar. The main cities are Reims and Epernay.
The use of the name Champagne in Australia – as it had been applied to sparkling wines – had ceased by September 2011 as a result of negotiations between Australia and the European Union.
The Comité claimed Jayne – who claimed the title of Ambassador for Champagne – misused “the glamour, Frenchness and accouterments otherwise associated with Champagne” to self-promote and big-up lesser plonk “without making it clear that they were not Champagne wines”.
Its demands for the cancellation of her domain champagnejayne.com and business name “Champagne Jayne” were refused but the Federal Court did clip Jayne’s wings in terms of any promotions that might mislead consumers into believing some of the sparklings on show were indeed a product of Champagne.