Bega in another IP fight, this time with Fonterra

Australian dairy producer Bega Cheese (ASX: BGA) is in Victoria’s Supreme Court fighting a dispute over the use of its brand names with NZ dairy co-operative Fonterra.

According to a report in, Bega and Fonterra are at loggerheads over a 2002 branding rights deal which gave Fonterra rights to the Bega Cheese brand.

Bega subsequently bought a number of Kraft products and now wants Fonterra to give up those rights.

Interestingly Bega won a bitter court battle with Kraft in May over that deal, as reported in @AuManufacturing news.

Kraft re-entered the Australian peanut butter market with products packaged in near-identical colours to the original Kraft livery, a practice which was condemned by the federal court.

The Fonterra battle is another IP battle that Bega, with its aim of becoming a more diversified food business, could well do without.

A core disagreement between the parties is whether Bega Cheese is using the Bega trademark it licensed to Fonterra on the new products, or whether it’s using a “stylised Bega mark similar to some of the trademarks” in the deal.

The case will take some weeks to decide.

Picture: Bega

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