Weekly IP Buzz for the week ending November 9, 2018

Weekly IP Buzz for the week ending November 9, 2018

Here is a summary of interesting developments in intellectual property, technology, social media, and Internet law for the week ending November 9, 2018.

Trademarking Fruit? About Apple Trademarks

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McIntosh, Granny Smith, and Pink Lady are all apple trademarks. Consumers have long been supporting apple trademarks and clubs without even noticing that apples are often sold under their specific trademarks, unlike most other produce. In the past few years, the rise of apple trademarks and apple clubs have resulted in an increase in the variety of apples available at supermarkets. Most of the substantial differences are related to intellectual property rights, however, and not due to significant differences in the look, flavor, or genetic history of the apples.

Unlike most produce, apples are one of the few produce items that are sold and distinguished by cultivar name, which means that consumers will actually pay more for varieties based on their apple trademark name, because of a belief that specific varieties offer unique qualities in taste, color, and flavor. The concept of owning intellectual property rights in produce has existed since the mid-20th century when, for example, apple tree growers began to spend money in growing specific varieties to better profit or sustain easier crop growth.

Find the full article on apple trademarks here.

Nestlé Disputes Potentially Infringing Third Party Trademark Use

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Food giant Nestlé has filed a complaint in federal court against a competitor for allegedly infringing upon its LEAN POCKETS® and HOT POCKETS® trademarks. According to the complaint, a New York company operated by Gigi Anthony (“Anthony”) has been selling and promoting food products under the name “Pizza Pocket,” “Pizza Pockets,” and “Russo’s Gluten Free Pizza Pockets.”

Anthony’s food products, which consist of filled-sandwich products, are allegedly infringing upon Nestlé’s HOT POCKETS® and LEAN POCKETS® products and trademarks because Nestlé has long offered a pizza-filled sandwich product under both the LEAN POCKETS® and HOT POCKETS® trademarks. 

Read more here

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Darin M. Klemchuk is founder of Klemchuk LLP, a litigation, intellectual property, and business law firm located in Dallas, Texas. He also co-founded Project K, a charitable movement devoted to changing the world one random act of kindness at a time, and publishes Thriving Attorney, a blog dedicated to exploring the business of the practice of law, productivity and performance for attorneys, and other topics such as law firm leadership and management, law firm culture, and business development for attorneys.

Click to learn more about Darin M. Klemchuk's law practice as an intellectual property lawyer.

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