Lindsey A. Zahn ’12 has won the Trandafir International Business Writing Competition for her note, Australia Corked its Champagne and So Should We: Enforcing Stricter Protection for Semi-Generic Wines in the United States. The note examines one of the hottest topics in wine law, the recently adopted wine trade agreement, The Agreement between Australia and the European Community on Trade in Wine. The Agreement enforces stricter and more adequate legal protection of European wines and prohibits Australian wine products from using semi-generic names originating in the European Communities (EC), including champagne.
Her note, which will be published in the University of Iowa College of Law’s Journal of Transnational And Contemporary Problems, argues that the United States should adopt a similar trade agreement with the EC to enforce stricter protections on semi-generic EC wine products in the United States, devises a system of implementation, and examines the implications of adopting such a system transnational wine trade law. She credits Professor Claire Kelly with encouraging her and supporting her research for the note. “Professor Kelly has been inspiring and so helpful in terms of pursuing my research,” said Zahn, who was Kelly’s research assistant this past year.
“Lindsey is an intelligent and hard working individual,” said Professor Kelly. “She is immensely capable and insightful, and I am not at all surprised that she was awarded this honor.”
Her interest in wine law was piqued by the 2008 Brunello di Montalcino scandal during which some Italian wine producers added grapes like merlot or syrah, to Brunello that by Italian law must be 100 percent sangiovese grapes. Prosecutors in Italy impounded millions of bottles from some of the most prominent Italian winemakers. Once she was selected for the Brooklyn Journal of International Law, she knew that her note would focus on a similar cutting-edge issue of wine law.
Based on the interest in her note, and thanks to her popular blog, "On Reserve: A Wine Law Blog,” Zahn was accepted to the Summer 2011 Wine and Law program in Champagne, France, a first for a law student from the States, and was also invited to attend the UC Davis Wine Law Conference, one of the most prestigious wine conferences in the nation.
Zahn, who is the Executive Articles Editor of the Journal of International Law, studied at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration, with the intention of pursuing a career in hospitality law. She has since developed a strong interest in international business law, and hopes to one day develop a niche practice in the area of wine law.
Zahn is the second BLS student to win this honor. The 2009-2010 awardee was Sarah Westby ’11, who won for her article about consumer protection regimes in Italy and the U.S.