Copyright case: Levola v Smilde, Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU)

Kluwer Copyright Blog
February 13, 2019

Please refer to this post as: , ‘Copyright case: Levola v Smilde, Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU)’, Kluwer Copyright Blog, February 13 2019, http://copyrightblog.kluweriplaw.com/2019/02/13/copyright-case-levola-v-smilde-court-of-justice-of-the-european-union-cjeu/


The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled on a series of questions referred by the Arnhem-Leeuwarden Appeals Court (Netherlands), relating to the possible copyright protection of the taste of a cheese product. The CJEU confirmed that the concept of a “work” provided for in Directive 2001/29 requires the existence of an external expression identified in a sufficiently accurate and objective manner, which does not occur in the case of a taste. In short, it is impossible to objectively and accurately define the subject matter of protection, leading to legal uncertainty, which determines that a flavour cannot be classified as an intellectual work.

Case date: 13 November 2018
Case number: C-310/17
Court: Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU)

A full summary of this case has been published on Kluwer IP Law.