M&S is suing Aldi again for ‘copying’ – and this time it’s over festive gin
It's the second time the discount retailer has been accused of copying M&S’ designs this year.
Who can forget the whole Colin the Caterpillar fiasco that went down earlier this year?
In case you do need you memory jogging, all the way back in April, leading retailer Marks & Spencer decided to launch legal action against Aldi over the iconic Colin the Caterpillar cake, claiming that the budget supermarket’s own larvae dessert – Cuthbert the Caterpillar – was just too similar and infringes its trademark.
It was a case that blew up on social media, with plenty of other well-known supermarkets and retailers showing their support after Aldi launched its own #FreeCuthbert campaign.
And now, it’s happening all over again.
Even though we may have thought the days of caterpillar cake wars and supermarkets suing each other are over, it’s now been revealed that M&S is once again launching legal action against Aldi and has accused the retailer copying the design of one of it’s most popular festive products this year – a Christmas gin liqueur with gold flakes.
M&S – who said it was one of the first to introduce glitter gin globes to the UK market – is taking Aldi to court for selling its own version of the festive drink, which is named ‘The Infusionist’.
The popular retailer is believed to have filed papers at the High Court on 3 December alleging that Aldi’s version copies the ‘M&S Light-Up Gin’ and has been available for sale since early November.
‘The Infusionist’ gins are available in clementine and blackberry flavours, and work out at £6 cheaper than the M&S Light-Up Gins – which come in identical bell-shaped bottles that are illuminated from below, with edible gold flakes floating in the liquid.
M&S is seeking an injunction to restrain the discount retailer from infringing its designs, and is requiring it to surrender or destroy its stock, and pay damages plus costs.
Aldi has already rejected requests to stop selling the products.
The documents submitted by M&S said that Aldi’s gin “constitute designs which do not produce on the informed user a different overall impression to the M&S designs”, with an “informed user” being defined as a “member of the general public who is interested in purchasing liqueur during the Christmas period”
Speaking on the launching of the legal action, a spokesperson for M&S said that the retailer knew “the true value and cost of innovation”, adding that: “We will always seek to protect our reputation for freshness, quality, innovation and value and protect our customers from obvious copies.”
Aldi is yet to release a public statement on the situation, and industry professionals have said it is not yet clear which way the High Court will decide.
Featured Image – M&S