Labatt Suing Brick Over Red Baron Packaging

WATERLOO, ONBrick Brewing announced today that it has received a Statement of Claim commenced by Labatt Breweries claiming that the recently redesigned packaging for their Red Baron Lager is too similar to the packaging of Brava Lager, a brand brewed by Lakeport Brewing which has been owned by Labatt since 2007.

Labatt is seeking an injunction against Brick as well as damages or an accounting of profits from Brick’s sales of Red Baron since adopting its new packaging. Labatt is claiming that the colour scheme and bottles are too similar to Brava and this could result in irreparable harm to the Brava brand. baron_brava

George Croft, Brick’s President & CEO said “Their claim is without merit, we do not believe consumers are being confused and we tried to talk through the situation with Labatt and avoid an adversarial relationship. Brick is disappointed that despite our best intentions, Labatt has launched this lawsuit. Notwithstanding the differences in packaging, based on The Beer Store retail layout and policies, consumers normally have to ask for Red Baron by name, which makes confusion over packaging seem unlikely.”

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Comments

  1. Does Labatt not have better things to do then sue smaller players? I had heard at The Beer Store that Brick had hired the graphic designer that previously was at Lakeport. Since a bunch of the new managment at Brick Brewing is Lakeport alums, this comes as no surprise (if true).

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  2. The labels may be slightly similar, but the taste difference is unmistakable. Red Baron tastes good.

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  3. KF

    Labatt’s claim is crazy. The labels are different enough. They just want to beat up on the little guy. Shame on Labatt.

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  4. This lawsuit is without merit. However, I think that Brick should consider reverting to their old label. It was much more distinctive and felt like it was playing homage to its roots in Waterloo (or, New Berlin)

    That being said, I am starting to see more Red Baron show up at barbecues and parties. The marketing department has been doing a good job.

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  5. And Labatt, how about you start cutting back on anti-competitive practices. As a beer drinker, I pay attention to them and buy accordingly.

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  6. Jack – a month or so after the lawsuit was brough forth, a settlement was announced: http://canadianbeernews.wordpress.com/2009/06/11/labatt-brick-settle-trademark-lawsuit/

    Details weren’t revealed, but I suspect that Brick realized how much money it would cost them to fight this, and decided that a settlement and redesign would be cheaper.

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  7. The re-design lable (after the Labatt’s injunction) looks even better than the one that was apparently similar to Brava’s. The publicity of this probably did Labatt more harm than the Lable. And look for Red Baron Lime !

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