On 14 November 2023, the AfrIPI Project organised a restitution workshop in Nouakchott, Mauritania on the geographical indication (GI) ‘Poutargue Imraguen’, in collaboration with the African Intellectual Property Organisation (OAPI).
The hybrid workshop was organised with the support of the Delegation of the European Union in Mauritania (DUE), OAPI National Liaison Structure, and Imraguen women processors. National and international authorities were also present, along with civil society associations.
As part of the implementation process for the registration of the geographical indication ‘Poutargue Imraguen’, and its effective long-term use, activities were carried out to provide guidance on drafting specifications for the GI. A prospective study intended to support the action plan for future GI applications for registration carried out by an AfrIPI project consultant, was also presented.
At the end of the workshop, the stakeholders reached a consensus on a number of issues that are essential to the success of the GI, such as the choice of name, the group to defend the GI, and the institutional and technical support that will be needed for the registration and smooth operation of the ‘Poutargue Imraguen’.
A GI identifies a product whose quality, reputation or other characteristics are essentially linked to its geographical origin. In Mauritania, Poutargue is made by members of the Imraguen people, who devote themselves exclusively to the seasonal fishing of yellow mullet, from October to December and March to April.
It is a sector that is essential to the local economy and needs to be protected at both national and international level, in order to secure commercial outlets, increase the income of local producers and processors and enhance the value of local natural resources. Promoting this tradition requires the support of all those involved in the industries associated with the development and preservation of this tradition and local know-how.