The so-called trademark, in short, refers to the identification that distinguishes the goods of different businesses. According to the Trademark Law of our country, trademark refers to the mark that can distinguish the goods of natural person, legal person or other organizations from those of others. A unique trademark, which is easy to be remembered and spread by consumers, often plays a key role in the process of sales and promotion of goods. It can bring better economic benefits to enterprises and is of great significance to the long-term development of enterprises.
According to the regulations on the administration of pesticides, pesticides refer to the mixtures and preparations used for the prevention and control of diseases, insects, grasses, rats and other harmful organisms endangering agriculture and forestry, as well as the mixtures and preparations that purposefully regulate the growth of plants and insects. In the history of our country, the name of pesticide used to be a trademark to some extent. However, according to the policy of the Ministry of agriculture, the approval of commodity names will be stopped from January 8, 2008; the previously approved commodity names will no longer be allowed to be used. Therefore, for pesticide enterprises to create brand, pesticide trademark is the only channel at this stage, its importance is self-evident.
Compared with other industries, pesticide industry has its own characteristics, which has a direct impact on pesticide trademarks. In this paper, based on the characteristics of pesticide industry, the characteristics of pesticide trademarks were analyzed. At the same time, the common trademark strategies of pesticide enterprises were summarized, and relevant suggestions were put forward, hoping to provide some reference for the industry.
Characteristics and development trend of pesticide trademarks
1. The use of trademarks is strictly regulated by policies and regulations
Pesticide is an important means of production, which plays a very important role in crop planting and disease control. Therefore, countries all over the world generally implement strict regulatory policies on the pesticide industry, including its pesticide labels. China is no exception. Generally speaking, trademarks can be divided into registered trademarks and unregistered trademarks. The difference between the two is that the former enjoys the exclusive right of registered trademarks. For the vast majority of industries, market entities can use both registered trademarks and unregistered trademarks according to specific conditions. But pesticide companies do not enjoy this freedom. According to the administrative measures for pesticide labels and instructions issued by the Ministry of agriculture, "unregistered trademarks shall not be used in pesticide labels and instructions." In other words, if a trademark is used on a pesticide product, a registered trademark must be used. The reason is that the use of unregistered trademarks may lead to some out of control supervision. This possibility will not arise without the use of registered trademarks. Therefore, no use of trademarks is allowed. In addition, the measures for the administration of pesticide labels and instructions also make specific provisions on how to use a registered trademark: it should be marked at the four corners of the label, the area occupied shall not exceed 1 / 9 of the label area, and the font size of the text part shall not be greater than that of the pesticide name. In addition, the pesticide labels and instructions shall be approved by the Ministry of agriculture in advance; after three months of re approval, the original labels and instructions shall not be used.
2. No trademark or registered trademark?
As mentioned above, registered trademarks may or may not be used on pesticide products. However, according to the author's observation, the vast majority of pesticides are in the use of registered trademarks. Not only that, the same pesticide enterprise often uses different registered trademarks on different pesticide products, even when the effective ingredients are the same, but the dosage forms and doses are different, forming the phenomenon of "one drug, one label".
The biggest advantage of this way of trademark use is that the trademark can form a one-to-one correspondence with pesticides. For the distributors and end consumers of pesticide products, it is only necessary to remember the trademark of pesticide to accurately select the required pesticide, so as to avoid confusion and misunderstanding, which is conducive to the promotion and sales of pesticide. Its disadvantages are also obvious. The registration and use of trademarks are relatively scattered, and trademarks are "independent", which is not conducive to the formation of enterprise brand effect. At the same time, the daily management burden of trademark is also heavy.
According to the current situation of pesticides in circulation in the market, there are indeed some pesticide commodities without registered trademarks. According to the author's observation, most of these pesticides are relatively low-end conventional varieties, such as oxalophosphate. In the case of no trademark, the source of pesticide can only be distinguished by the manufacturer. According to the measures for the administration of pesticide labels and instructions, registered trademarks can be marked on the four corners of the label, which can occupy up to 1 / 9 of the label area, and the font size can be the same as that of the general name of the pesticide. Therefore, generally speaking, the manufacturer on the pesticide label is obviously smaller than the registered trademark, and sometimes it is difficult for dealers and final consumers to find it, which leads to this phenomenon Pesticide products may be at a disadvantage in competition with similar products.
3. Text trademark or graphic trademark?
According to the provisions of the trademark law, any sign that can distinguish the origin of goods can be applied for registration as a trademark, such as words, graphics, letters, numbers, etc. However, in pesticide products, we found that enterprises prefer to use the word form of trademark. The author randomly selected 100 trademarks of designated herbicides, pesticides and pesticides, and found that 98%, 93% and 92% of the trademarks were pure words or combination of words and graphics. It can be seen that the written trademarks of pesticides almost occupy the majority of the proportion. The reason is that the pesticide industry needs to distinguish different products quickly and accurately. Compared with the trademarks of other elements such as graphics, word trademarks are easier to identify, call and remember, so they are generally favored by enterprises.
4. Implied trademark or arbitrary trademark or fabricated trademark?
A registered trademark shall have distinctive features for easy identification. According to the order from weak to strong, trademarks can be divided into the following types: ① descriptive trademarks, which directly describe the characteristics / quality / performance of goods; ② suggestive trademarks, which indicate the attributes or characteristics of goods by implication / metaphor; ③ arbitrary trademarks, which have specific meanings but have no relationship with commodities; ④ fictitious trademarks, fictitious / without any specific meanings 。 The common name, dosage form, concentration and registered crop species of pesticides are lack of the distinctive characteristics required by the trademark law, so they can not be registered as trademarks.
Compared with arbitrary trademarks and fabricated trademarks, suggestive trademarks are more attractive to consumers and easier to remember. Therefore, implied trademarks are often preferred by the management of enterprises. So is the pesticide industry.
Due to the limitation of language, it can be predicted that the probability of the appearance of implied trademarks will be less and less, while the proportion of arbitrary trademarks and fabricated trademarks will be increasing. For example, the registered trademarks of Zhejiang Xin'an Chemical Group Co., Ltd. before 2000 included "NongWang", "Hewang" and "Nong Xingwang", which implied the bright future after using the products, which were all suggestive trademarks. However, in recent years, the registered trademarks were more fictitious words with no specific meaning, such as "Bakun", "Yike", "Shi ti". This may represent the development trend of pesticide trademarks in the future.
The basic strategy of pesticide trademark
Through the analysis of the trademark application of large-scale agricultural chemical enterprises at home and abroad, the author found that the basic strategy is the same, that is, the primary and secondary trademarks. Specifically, each pesticide product generally has one or two main trademarks, usually the enterprise's brand name or logo; at the same time, there is also a secondary trademark, that is, the trademark of the pesticide product itself. For example, Zhejiang Xin'an Chemical Group Co., Ltd. has used two registered trademarks of "Xin'an" and "Yibao" on 40% Emamectin chlorpyrifos EW. Among them, "Xin'an" is the owner brand and "Yibao" is the product trademark. For example, FMC in the United States used two main trademarks, "thiram" and "FMC" on the 200g / L chlorantraniliprole SC, and also used the subsidiary trademark "kangkuang".
The advantages of this primary and secondary trademark strategy are: on the one hand, it avoids the confusion and misunderstanding of pesticides; on the other hand, it can highlight the individual characteristics of each product, which is convenient for promotion and sales in the market segments; by publicizing the main trademark, to a large extent, it overcomes the disadvantages of the "one drug, one label" trademark that is too scattered and difficult to form a joint force in the market Brand effect of enterprises.
Suggestions on pesticide trademark
1. The pesticide industry is strictly regulated by policies and regulations. Pesticide enterprises must act in strict accordance with relevant policies and regulations in terms of trademarks and labels, and must comply with the relevant policies and regulations, and do not step on the red line.
2. The primary and secondary trademark strategy is a common and effective trademark strategy in the industry. It is suggested that pesticide enterprises should determine the main trademark and obtain trademark registration as soon as possible. The main trademark should be consistent with the enterprise brand name. The scope of registration of the main trademark should not only consider the current business needs, but also take full account of the long-term development plan of the enterprise. If the registration of the main trademark is unsuccessful or partially unsuccessful, the reasons for rejection should be analyzed, and the obstacles to the prior trademark should be removed by means of revocation, invalidation declaration and purchase.
3. It is a common practice in the industry to use sub trademarks on various pesticide products. Therefore, it is suggested that enterprises should carry out trademark registration and trademark reserve in time. At present, the period of trademark registration is about 9-12 months. Therefore, it is suggested that enterprises should start trademark registration immediately at the same time of establishing new products. If the cycle from new product approval to application for listing is less than 12 months, it is suggested to reserve a part of "universal" trademarks for reserve. Considering that trademark application often fails to register successfully, it is suggested that enterprises should entrust professionals to inquire and apply for multiple alternative trademarks for the same new product at the same time, so as to provide the success rate. At the same time, we should pay attention to the daily management of registered trademarks.
4. Compared with other industries, pesticide trademarks are more emphasis on easy identification and calling. The preferred trademark element is text-based, and it is suggested to be pure text, which can have simple design. The trademark and the trademark of pesticide are the mainstream in the future. Suggestive trademark is a scarce resource, and there is no need to demand it.