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US trade mark infringement claim from Mars

Written by Ellis Sweetenham on 27 March 2017

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Confectionery giants Mars have filed a claim against a US chocolatier arguing trade mark infringement.

The US chocolate making business in question is CocoVaa and its parent company Syovata Edari.

Mars have a registered trade mark in the USA for CocoVia in which they launched in 2003. Under this brand, they sold a line of dark chocolate bars that contained coca flavanols and plant sterols. These additions help promote healthy blood flow according to the information on Mars’ website. The CocoVia mark was registered in 2010.

The CocoVaa mark was filed in August last year and registered in March this year, covering goods such as chocolate candies, toffee and chocolate mousse.

Mars sent a cease and desist letter, in September last year on being notified of the application, to prevent CocoVaa from trading however, this did not prevent their continuing sale and trading.

The key arguments in Mars claim is that the CocoVaa mark is likely to cause confusion with their mark, deceive customers into thinking it originates from Mars and harm Mars’s goodwill and reputation.

The infringement claim was filed on 24th March 2017 therefore this case is in its very early stages.

Mars are asking for the CocoVaa mark to be cancelled as well as asking for damages and an account for profits.

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