In court papers, M&S argues the designs of Aldi’s gold flake clementine gin liqueur and gold flake blackberry gin liqueur are “strikingly similar” to its own – following on from a row over M&S Colin the Caterpillar
Image: Joseph Raynor/ Nottingham Post)
Aldi tweeted a very sassy response to M&S after the high-end supermarket threatened to sue over ‘copycat’ gin.
M&S is seeking a High Court injunction against Aldi who recently launched a gold flake blackberry gin liqueur in stores.
In court papers, M&S argues the designs of Aldi’s gold flake clementine gin liqueur and gold flake blackberry gin liqueur are “strikingly similar” to its own.
But Aldi were quick to lighten to mood with their witty response, tweeting “We’re Colin our lawyers” – in reference to a similar row that broke out earlier this year over rival Colin and Cuthbert Caterpillar cakes.
The papers include registered design images of M&S’s Light Up gin. A list of features M&S says are protected include the shape of the bottle, an integrated light feature, gold leaf flakes and a winter forest graphic.
It also wants Aldi to destroy or hand over anything constituting a potential breach of the injunction and an inquiry into damages arising from the alleged infringement.
The case marks the second time the chain has taken the grocer to court, after taking legal action against Aldi’s Colin the Caterpillar dupe in April this year.
M&S argued the Cuthbert cake infringed its trademark and “rode on the coat-tails” of its reputation.
The case was trending on Twitter, with many joking about the situation – but once again Aldi had a quick-witted response.
They took to Twitter, writing: “This is not just any court case, this is… #FreeCuthbert.” – gently mocking M&S tagline used to advertise its food as superior to competitors.
Aldi mocked the legal battle in its Christmas advert, which showed Cuthbert being arrested in the background of a scene. The case continues.
An M&S spokesman said: “M&S has a proud history as a leading British innovator and for over 136 years customers have turned to M&S for unique, original, quality products – conceived, created and developed by us working with our trusted suppliers and produced to the highest standards.
“We’ve introduced many firsts to the UK – the first chilled chicken kiev, the introduction of pre-packed sandwiches, glitter gin globes, the first and only retailer to sell 100% RSPCA Assured milk and of course our character products.
So, like many other UK businesses, large and small, we know the true value and cost of innovation and the enormous time, passion, creativity, energy and attention to detail that goes into designing, developing and bringing a product to market and building its brand over many years.
“Our customers have confidence in our products because they trust our quality and sourcing standards, so we will always seek to protect our reputation for freshness, quality, innovation and value – and protect our customers from obvious copies.”
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.