Not so Greek yoghurt

Chobani-Greek-Yogurt1When we think of Greek yogurt, we think of a somewhat thicker tasty yogurt. In our perception Greek yoghurt is more a kind of yoghurt than yoghurt originating from Greece.

Our perception might be wrong, or based on our local experiences, in England they think the opposite. More precisely, the judge thinks the opposite.

Diary giant Chobani sells yoghurt with the description Greek Yogurt. In appeal the judge confirmed a first ruling that they are not allowed to do so, as the yoghurt is not made in Yoghurt or does not originate from Greece. So using this description is misleading.

Chobani defended itself by saying that Greece Yoghurt is not a protected indication of origin and a generic indication of a specific yoghurt. The judge did not share this opinion: the majority of English-yoghurt-eating-public will think that Greek yoghurt is made in Greece.

Although this applies to a generic description, it is a quick reminder of how the perception of the public can play a role when applying for a trademark. Especially in cases of a trademark consisting of a geographical indication, we just have to check whether this trademark could not be misleading.

Source: dairyreporter.com

Arnaud Bos

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