Lindt chocolate bunnies notch another legal victory
A Munich court has banned a confectionary maker from producing a range of chocolate bunnies that infringe on the patent rights of Swiss company Lindt & Sprüngli.
Germany’s Allgäuer Confiserie Heilemann drew protests from Lindt with its chocolate bunny design wrapped in gold foil. The Swiss company complained that they looked too similar to its own best-selling confectionary range.
Last month, Lindt scored a legal victory when a Swiss court ordered the retailer Lidl to stop selling the copycat rangeExternal link in Switzerland.
In Germany, Lindt has already secured trademark protection on the shade of gold it used for wrapping its own chocolates.
This prompted a Munich court on Thursday to reverse a previous ruling in favour of the Allgäuer Confiserie Heilemann range.
The new verdict threatens the parent company Thüringer Viba with a €250,000 (CHF248,000) fine if it continues to infringe Lindt’s trademark rights.
But the legal case threatens to drag on as the German courts have not accepted all of Lindt’s legal complaints.
The Swiss company sells 150 million of its gold wrapped ‘Goldhasen’ bunnies in 50 markets and has launched legal action in other countries.
Lindt’s chocolate bunnies have been sold in Germany since 1952 and using the same colour of foil since 1997. The Heilemann bunny first appeared on supermarket shelves in 2018.
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