The past year has been an active one in the chocolate trademark wars, as confectionery giants attempt to use trademark law to protect the shapes of iconic candy products. In the US, and in many other jurisdictions, companies can protect product shapes or configurations, but only if they are sufficiently distinctive that the design functions as an indicator of source. Chocolatiers have had varying degrees of success in convincing trademark offices and courts that their confections have attained that status. … More
Tag Archives: Kit Kat
Three-dimensional trademarks have given rise to some interesting European Community decisions in the last several months (see, for example, our comments on the Kit Kat and Lego decisions). A decision rendered last week by the General Court, concerning the Coca-Cola bottle shape, confirms that it is a real challenge to obtain registration for these trademarks.
In 2002, the Coca-Cola Company filed a Community trademark application to protect its well-known “contour glass bottle with fluting.” The trademark was accepted by the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (OHIM) on the basis of its inherent distinctiveness.… More
The story begins in the UK in 1935, when a worker at Rowntree’s York factory put an idea in the suggestion box for a snack that “a man could take to work in his pack.” This idea led to the famous four-finger Kit Kat chocolate bar and, although Rowntree was acquired by Nestlé in 1988, the shape has remained almost entirely unchanged since 1935. Only its size has been altered slightly.… More