Hershey’s Lawsuit Highlights Trademark Issues In The Cannabis Industry
If you have visited cannabis dispensaries or stores, chances are you have seen products that bear a striking resemblance to well known products. dispensaries and stores sell candy bars with names like ‘Kush Kat,’ with packaging very similar to ‘Kit Kat.’ These establishments also sell cannabis strains named after celebrities like NFL quarterback Peyton Manning.
While these product names and packaging are great for advertising, they create legal issues for the parties involved. Hershey is currently suing a cannabis business in Seattle and an edible maker in Colorado for trademark infringement. From Kiro TV:
“The Hershey Company has filed a federal lawsuit against Seattle Conscious Care Cooperative for trademark infringement, citing issues with their pot products called Reefer’s Cups and Mr. Dankbar.
At the Conscious Care Cooperative location in North Seattle, the logos on the doors resembled that of the Sonics. Online a logo of theirs also resembles the logo of the Sounders FC.”
If you are a cannabis business, be leery of creating and/or selling cannabis products that involve trademarked or copyrighted logos or information. A catchy name can certainly boost sales. However, a lawsuit can wipe out those profits very fast, and result in the loss of even more money. Consult with an attorney before creating logos and/or product names. It will save you money and headaches in the long run.