Economy In Laguiole, they sharpen their knives to protect their...

In Laguiole, they sharpen their knives to protect their know-how and local jobs

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648x415 faconnage couteau laguiole illustration

The shaping of the Laguiole knife. (Drawing) – Laguiole knife manufacturers union

  • The National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) has opened a public inquiry into the geographical indication “Laguiole knife” at the request of the Syndicate of Aveyron manufacturers of the Laguiole knife.
  • This approach aims to protect the ancestral know-how of the Aveyron manufacturers of folding knives, often imitated and counterfeit.
  • Today, the cutlery union that carries this approach represents 220 local jobs.

After Limoges porcelain or even Charente-Périgord Charentaise, Laguiole knives will join the closed circle of geographical indications of manufactured products. To obtain this precious sesame by the end of the year, the Aveyron cutlers federated into a union have decided to file a request for obtaining it with the National Institute of Industrial Property (INPI) which is today the subject to a public inquiry.

It must be said that for twenty years, many products, including the famous folding knives, were marketed under the Laguiole brand, without ever having gone through a forge on the Aubrac plateau. In 1993, an entrepreneur from Val-de-Marne had the idea to register the name of the town, which allowed him to authorize its use to produce both barbecues and clothing. After years of legal combat, the small town in the north of Aveyron was able to regain the use of its name.

Local employment and know-how

But in the meantime, the famous knife known for its famous bee, born more than two centuries ago, had been imitated without ever being able to legally counter these manufacturers from the other end of France, sometimes the world. “It was after this fight around the name Laguiole that there was the Hamon Law on geographical indications of manufactured products. Before we could not say if a knife was produced in Laguiole or Nogent, tomorrow we can ”, welcomes Vincent Alazard, the mayor of the town of which this is the only manufacturing activity.

For him, the satisfaction is also to see the cutlers of the territory unite around this project. Their companies represent nearly 220 employees, or 93.6% of jobs in the sector in northern Aveyron, and 15 million euros in turnover. “We are local manufacturers, with the maintenance of local jobs today and in the future, we want to defend our know-how. The Hamon Law is there to enlighten the consumer of abusive use, we have filed this request so that he knows when he buys a knife that it is well made in Laguiole ”, pleads Honoré Durand, the president of the union.

An interest in this local and ancestral craftsmanship which cannot be denied since last year, two of the town’s cutlery shops were in the top 10 of the most visited companies in Occitania with a total of more than 200,000 visitors. To support their approach, the cutlers of northern Aveyron are calling on lovers of fine blades to participate in the public inquiry which will end on March 29.



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