In a recent ruling, the Israeli trademark registrar rejected an opposition ~filed by Elite, a famous Israeli chocolate manufacturer, against Kraft Foods Schweiz Holdings AG.
The trademark application in dispute was an image of a purple cow figure, standing on purple grass, with icy mountains at the background. The image is placed inside an eliptic figure, which is also purple.
The applicant have been using a purple image for about a hundred years, while the cow has been used for about three decades.
On February 3rd, 2000, the applicant ~filed a trademark application for chocolate products (class 30).
The opposer is a well know Israeli company who manufactures and distributes a chocolates called "Cow Chocolate", and many other products. The opposer has a registered trademark since the year 1995. The exact figure used by the opposer have been replaced over the years.
The opposer claimed that the requested mark misleads and decepts the public to believe that the product is actually the opposer´s product.
The applicant claimed that its trademark is registered all over the world, have been sold in Israel at the 90´s, and it is not similar to the opposer´s figure. The applicant also claimed that accepting the opposer´s claim will grant the opposer an exclusive right to use a cow figure, a right which the opposer specifically withdrawed when the trademark was asked.
The trademark registrar ruled that the requested mark is not deceptive, and that there is no concern that the public will be mislead. The trademark registrar also accepted the claim that the opposer should not be granted an exclusive right to use a cow figure.
"The grass is to allow both of the cows to herd in peace", ended the trademark registrar.