Pig Demont or Puigdemont? Ex-Catalan leader is pigged off over punComments
Based deep in the hills of southern Spain, one food and drink company has caused controversy with Catalans — and it all comes down to a name with a pun.
The business called "Pig Demont" says it was "born from the feeling and pride of being Andalucian and Spanish.” It sells ham and wines from the region.
But its logo of a pig that strikingly resembles the former separatist Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont has caused a stir.
Self-exiled Puigdemint had asked Spanish authorities to stop the sale of the brand of dry-cured ham.
On Thursday, Spain's Patent and Trademark Office agreed with him and ruled that the brand's trademark must change as it is "contrary to the law" and is "offensive."
In an interview with the Spanish radio station COPE, the company's founder, Alberto González López, said the image is not affiliated to Puigdemont, but is simply a "caricature of a pig."
What's in a name?
González and his lawyers maintain that the name came from the word 'pig' in English and the French word 'Demont', meaning "coming from the mountains." Insisting that "(The ham) comes from a mountainous town in Malaga."
Despite the glasses and shaggy hairstyle resembling Puigdemont, González said the former Catalan leader does not own the intellectual property rights over the haircut.
But another product on its website seems to reference another Catalan politician. The wine 'Rufian' shares the surname of Gabriel Rufian, a member of Spain's parliament for the pro-independence party ERC.
Satire gone too far?
Puigdemont's lawyer, Jaume Alonso Cuevillas, told Spanish television network TV3 that he had challenged the attempt to register the brand Pig Demont because it is "offensive."
But González said, "If he [Puigdemont] sees himself reflected in the caricature of a pig that is more his problem then mine."
"I believe that humour is fundamental in life and in politics perhaps more so," he added.
But González admitted that he is also concerned about the viability and the future of his company.
Puigdemont fled to Belgium in October and was detained in Germany in March after Spain issued a European arrest warrant against him.
Madrid wants to extradite him to Spain for his part in Catalonia's independence referendum on charges of rebellion and misuse of public funds.