May 2, 2018

Jack Daniel's Take A Shot Against Whiskey Producers For Trademark Infringement

The makers of Jack Daniel's, the top-selling Tennessee whiskey, have become disgruntled over a look alike product that has hit shelves in the US. The whisky in question, entitled Lonehand Whiskey, is now the subject of a complaint in the US District Court for the Northern District of California.

The complaint has been brought by the Brown-Foreman Corporation who are one of the USA's largest spirit and wine companies. The corporation manufactures many well-known brands, including Jack Daniel's, Chambord and Finlandia. The Defendants to the action are Dynasty Spirits and Buffalo Bayou Distilleries; Dynasty Spirits being responsible for the distilling and marketing the Lonehand product and Buffalo Bayou Distilleries for their part in the labelling and packaging of the product.

The complaint was filed on 20 April by Brown-Foreman who are the proprietors of registered US trade dress for the shape of the Jack Daniel's bottle, including its ribbed neck, as well as for figurative marks for phrases such as 'sour mash whiskey'.

Brown-Foreman highlight that the Lonehand Whiskey is sold in a similar shaped bottle and includes the phrase 'Tennessee sour mash'. In addition to this, Brown-Foreman allege the whiskey is being marketed and sold in the same manner Jack Daniels is sold, a strategy that they believe has been purposely adopted in so that consumers are deceived into thinking the two undertakings are linked.

Brown-Foreman are concerned that Lonehand Whiskey will damage and cause harm to their product's distinctive trade dress and reputation; this belief probably stems from their statement that Lonehand Whiskey is of inferior quality.

Brown-Foreman are seeking damages for trademark infringement and dilution, trade dress infringement and for false advertising.

If you have any questions on the above, please do not hesitate to contact the team at McDaniel & Co. on 0191 281 4000 or legal@mcdanielslaw.com.

Posted by: in: News, Trade Marks

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