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Supreme. A monopoly too far when it comes to pet food

Written by Michael Coyle on 07 March 2015

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HHJ Arnold put it thus :-In this case the Claimant ("Supreme Petfoods") seeks in essence to monopolise use of the word SUPREME as a trade mark for animal food. The Defendant ("Henry Bell") denies that Supreme Petfoods is entitled to such a monopoly, and in the alternative denies that it has invaded any monopoly to which Supreme Petfoods may be entitled. It ought to be possible for such a dispute to be resolved without great legal difficulty or expense. Such is the current state of European trade mark law, however, that instead it has thrown up a considerable number of legal and factual issues, although the number was reduced as a result of sensible concessions made by both sides during closing submissions. As a result, I fear that the costs will have been out of all proportion to what is at stake."

So even though you do have a trade mark its not bullet proof and can be attacked as in this instance where HHJ Arnold's decision highlights the problems with enforcing descriptive trade marks. 

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