Minneapolis is the chosen venue for a brand new legal food fight, one involving potato chips.
Putting aside for the moment that the proper test of trademark infringement is not based on a side by side comparison of products (unless, of course, they are encountered that way in the real world, as opposed to the court room) because consumers are believed to have imperfect recollections of the details of brands and marks, what do you think about the allegation of likely confusion between the two packages shown below?
Ding, ding, ding. Ladies and gentlemen, in the white bag, standing in the right corner, sporting the Old Vienna® brand, and the federally-registered Red Hot Riplets® mark (disclaiming only the term “Hot”), is the fighter claiming infringement. In the red-brick bag, standing in the left corner, sporting the Engine Co. 51 brand, and the words Red Hot Ripple, is the “fire” fighter claiming it has done nothing wrong, and feels so strongly, it wants to prove so in court.
To read the spicy cease and desist letters from Old Vienna® that triggered the lawsuit, see here.
To read a copy of the federal complaint filed in court by Barrel O’Fun Snack Foods, see here.
To see how this fight progresses, stay tuned here on DuetsBlog.