Sunday, December 13, 2009

Piracy, of the Bio- variety

Many of you have probably heard of the GI (Geographical Indication) that can be granted to a food or product made in a particular geographical region. Some examples are Roquefort cheese, Corsican honey, Champagne, Parma ham, etc. In France, it is governed by the AOC. (The site is in French, obviously, so if you don't read French, pardonnez-moi!) This designation ensures that no one outside of a region can make a product similar to that region's product and label it as coming from that region. I've probably made the explanation more difficult than necessary, but I tend to over-write when I 'splain.

Anywho, I saw today in my fantastic google alerts that India (yes, the whole country) has started a Traditional Knowledge Digital Library in an attempt to stop, or slow, BIOPIRACY. The full story is here.

Basically, what they are doing is creating a database of traditional Indian medicinal, spiritual, and wellness recipes, cures, exercise, lifestyles, etc. to prevent patents being given mistakenly to incorrect Indian naturopathy.

Sounds dandy to me! In any event, I think the database is a good idea to store and maintain Indian natural and homeopathic traditions. However, I just hope that people don't go into the database and try things out without getting advice from their doctors first. Since I'm superwoman, I've been OK with taking whatever natural remedies I've wanted over the years, but I don't suggest the same for everyone.

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