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The Creation of the Costa Rica Artisan Seal

The indigenous sector of Costa Rica does not currently escape from a difficult practical duality that faces this population throughout the region, a constant crisis along the years: they are the real founding fathers of our culture; however, is a sector that has been vilely marginalized throughout the History, without efficiently granting it a deserving position of which we must be more than proud of ourselves and the international community.

There are many battles that have had to be waged and they cover many types; however, for purposes of Intellectual Property matters we find between these battles the defense of their cultural heritage to the future generations of the world, being that many times, situations as cultural appropriation have displaced these sectors that are rich in creativity.

Therefore, it is important to note the recent response of our Government in the first weeks of May of the present year, which creates a tool that emerges as support to the indigenous population, being this the recent entry into force of the Executive Decree 42315-MEIC-MCJ-TUR. This Decree creates a seal called “Artisan Costa Rica”. This identifier seal seeks to identify before the consuming public the exclusive products that come from original indigenous artisan creators, under a framework of quality standards and good commercial and environmental practices. This seal will grant without any question an impressive added value, not only before the local community, but also at international level, who often values indigenous culture, its originality and creativity much more.

It is important to identify who will handle this topic, being this the Costa Rican Commission of the Artisan Sector, created through the Executive Decree 41976-MEIC-MCJ-TUR. This Authority will establish, not only requirements that must be met for those who want to identify with this quality seal, but also the compliance of the standards for its creators.

This quality seal has a long way to go, since its creation is only a first step that could chart a path with an impressive potential to defend cultural identity, creativity, innovation and other practices that are subject to Intellectual Property protection.

The success of this initiative is a joint responsibility that will be in the hands of the Government, the Private Sector and even professionals that are specialists in Intellectual Property matter to ensure the so much expected acknowledgment of the rich creative work of the indigenous populations of our country.

Cristina Mora Granados
García & Bodán
Costa Rica