BOISE, Idaho—Lawmakers are fast-tracking an emergency resolution designed to stop a Turkish company's plans to register the "Idaho" label and place it on agricultural products not produced in Idaho.
If successful, the company could undercut Idaho farm products and dilute the Idaho brand, lawmakers were told Jan. 31 by Pat Kole, vice president of legal affairs for the Idaho Potato Commission.
The IPC recently learned that a Turkish company, Beta Agriculture and Trade Co., has filed for registration of the "Idaho" mark with the Turkish Patent Institute.
If successful, the company would exclusively be allowed to sell ag products with the "Idaho" label in Turkey and it would prevent legitimate Idaho products from being sold in Turkey with the "Idaho" mark, Kole said.
The potato commission is fighting the Turkish company's plan on behalf of potato growers and every farm commodity in Idaho, Kole said.
"We're acting on behalf of the state ... to protect the Idaho name so that all producers can use the Idaho brand," Kole told members of the Senate Agricultural Affairs Committee, which unanimously adopted the resolution. "We believe the word 'Idaho' should be able to be used only by somebody who is selling genuine Idaho products."
SOURCE: Sean Ellis, Capital Press