Cadbury win choc colour purple fight

Cadbury is the proud owner of the colour purple, a High Court Judge has ruled. At least, when it's wrapped around several blocks of sugar, milk, cocoa and emulsifiers, that is.

The ruling is a blow for key rival Nestlé which argued colours could not be practically trademarked for commercial advantage. Not so, claims High Court Judge Colin Birss.%VIRTUAL-SkimlinksPromo%

The Colour Purple

Cadbury's Dairy Milk has been wrapped in the specific shade of Pantone 2685C (to be exact) since the start of the First World War. But Nestle had argued that colours could not be trademarked.

"The evidence clearly supports a finding that purple is distinctive of Cadbury for milk chocolate," Judge Birss claims. Nestle had previously challenged a Kraft-owned Cadbury ruling in 2011 over the right to use the colour purple for chocolate bar and drink packaging, but this has been upheld.

Jo Alderson, an associate in the intellectual property team at Pinsent Masons law firm, told AOL Money the judge's move was unusual. "A trade mark registration for a particular colour is a very powerful tool to keep competitors at bay and helps prevent me-too products."

She went on: "I don't think it opens the door wide open for the registration of colour marks in the UK. I think it will still be difficult for brand owners to register colours as trade marks without significant evidence of long-standing use and that the colour is exclusively associated with that brand.

It's not surprising that Nestle tried to prevent the registration of the Cadbury purple mark, she adds, "as it gives Cadbury a significant advantage in this marketplace."

British public connection

Cadbury press spokesperson Tony Bilsborough said he welcomed the decision to protect the distinctive shade across a range of its milk chocolate products. "Our Colour Purple has been linked with Cadbury for more than a century and the British public have grown up understanding its link with our chocolate."

Nestle, in turn, owns a rash of other chocolate brands, including Kit Kat (red and silver), Milky bar (cream, white, red), After Eight (black, brown, green) and Jelly Tots (take your tint of choice), to name a few. So there could be more work for lawyers down the road here.

10 biggest companies in the world
See Gallery
Cadbury win choc colour purple fight

Wal-Mart Stores, or Walmart, is an American retailer that runs chains of discount department and warehouse stores around the world.

The company was founded by Sam Walton in 1962, incorporated on October 31, 1969, and first traded on the New York Stock Exchange in 1972. It is headquartered in Bentonville, Arkansas and has around 8,500 stores in 15 countries, under 55 different names.

Royal Dutch Shell, more commonly known as Shell, is a global oil and gas company headquartered in Holland, but with its registered office in London.

With operations in more than 90 countries, it is active in every area of the oil and gas industry, including exploration and production, refining, petrochemicals, power generation and trading.

Exxon Mobil Corporation, or ExxonMobil, is an American oil and gas corporation formed on November 30, 1999, by the merger of Exxon and Mobil. Its headquarters are in Irving, Texas.

With 37 oil refineries in 21 countries, Exxon Mobil Corporation is the largest refiner in the world.

BP is yet another global oil and gas company, this time headquartered in London. It has operations in more than 80 countries, produces about 3.8 million barrels of oil per day and has 22,400 service stations worldwide.

The name BP is derived from the initials of one of the company's former legal names, British Petroleum.

Sinopec Group is one of the major petroleum companies in China, headquartered in Beijing.

Its business includes oil and gas exploration as well as the production and sales of petrochemicals and chemical fibres.

China National Petroleum Corporation is a state-owned fuel-producing corporation and the largest integrated oil and gas company in China. It has its headquarters in Beijing.

CNPC - the parent company of PetroChina - was created in 17 September 1988 when the government decided to disband the Ministry of Petroleum and create a state owned company to handle all Petroleum activities in China.

State Grid Corporation of China is the largest electric power transmission and distribution company in China, once again headquartered in Beijing.

It has subsidiaries in Northern China, Northeastern China, Eastern China, Middle China and Northwestern China.

Toyota Motor Corporation, more commonly known simply as Toyota, is a multinational automaker headquartered in Toyota, Japan.

The company was founded by Kiichiro Toyoda in 1937 as a spinoff from his father's company Toyota Industries. Its brands include Toyota, Lexus and Daihatsu.

Japan Post Holdings is a state-owned Japanese company that deals with mail delivery and financial services.

It is headquartered in Tokyo and was founded on January 23, 2006.

Chevron Corporation is an American energy company headquartered in San Ramon, California.

It is active in more than 180 countries and is engaged in every aspect of the oil, gas, and geothermal energy industries, including exploration and production, and power generation.


Read Full Story