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Court rejects Aldi appeal over M&S gin liqueurs

Aldi has lost its appeal to dismiss a lawsuit that ruled it had infringed Marks & Spencer’s design for its gin liqueur range.

M&S took Aldi to court in 2021 over the trademark for its Light Up Snow Globe Gin Liqueur range

In February last year, British retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) won a trademark lawsuit against discount supermarket Aldi over a gin liqueur range containing gold flakes that was released in November 2021.

M&S filed the lawsuit in the UK’s High Court on 3 December 2021, alleging that the German retailer’s Infusionist Gold Flake Gin Liqueur range infringes on the trademark of M&S’s Light Up Snow Globe Gin Liqueur. M&S released its gin liqueur range in autumn 2020, ahead of the festive period.

Both products contain gold flakes and feature an LED function where the bottle lights up.

Following the High Court’s decision that the German retailer had infringed M&S’s registered designs for its gin liqueur, Aldi said it would appeal the decision.

However, the Court of Appeal ruled on 27 February 2024 that Aldi did infringe copyright laws.

An M&S spokesperson said: “We love to innovate for our customers and we’re proud of our suppliers who help us bring exciting new products to market every year. That’s why we take intellectual property seriously and will always defend our rights against infringement – companies that seek to copy rather than innovate harm hundreds of small suppliers who have invested in innovation to grow their business.”

The ruling followed M&S’s application to register the trademark ‘snow globe’ for alcoholic beverages, which was denied last month after Aldi opposed it.

An Aldi spokesperson said of the Court of Appeal’s latest verdict: “We are disappointed with this judgement and are considering our position, as we still believe there is no merit in the case put forward by M&S. We will continue to innovate and develop exciting, high-quality products for our customers.”

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