The CJEU has handed down its judgment in the referral from The Netherlands regarding copyright in the taste of cheese.
The Court has held that both the authorities responsible for ensuring that the exclusive rights inherent in copyright are protected as well as individuals, particularly economic operators, must be able to identify, clearly and precisely, the subject matter protected.
Secondly, there is a need to ensure that there is no element of subjectivity in the process of identifying the protected subject matter which means that the latter must be capable of being expressed in a precise and objective manner.
This is more than a nod to the well established Sieckmann criteria setting out trade mark requirements and has led to a finding that the taste of a food product cannot be identified with precision and objectivity.
The taste of a food cannot be protected by copyright, the EU's highest legal authority has ruled in a case involving a Dutch cheese.