SWA loses New Zealand trademark battle

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Scottish Whisky Association

Scottish Whisky Association

The Scotch Whisky Association has lost a trademark suit in New Zealand over a whisky flavoured drink bottled in the country.

The SWA sued the country’s largest independent off sales operator, Mill Liquor Save, over their MacGowans whisky flavoured spirit.

The association had contended that the name was deliberately intended into deceiving the public into believing that the product was genuine Scotch whisky.

But the assistant commissioner of trademarks, Jennie Walden, ruled that the use of a Scottish-sounding name was not sufficient grounds to find against the bottlers, reports stuff.co.nz.

In a statement, Mill Liquor Save said: “The opponent does not have proprietary rights to all Scottish-sounding words or names.

“To grant the opponent monopolistic rights in respect of all alcoholic beverages, where the name of the beverage could once have been considered Scottish, would be to grant rights in excess of what Parliament could have intended.”

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