Michigan trademark infringement alert:
The Traverse City Business News is reporting that Chateau Grand Traverse, a Michigan winery, has filed a federal lawsuit against vodka producer Grand Traverse Distillery alleging trademark infringement over the distillery's use of the "Grand Traverse" name. The dispute arises from the winery's opposition to the Distillery's Trademark filing with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for registration of the mark "Grand Traverse Distillery" on the principal registrar.
The winery claims trademark rights in the name since it has used the mark "Chateau Grand Traverse" since 1977 and had recently filed and was granted trademark registration in late 2007. Grand Traverse Distillery filed for its trademark protection July 2005. However, trademark rights date back to the date of first use in commerce.
This is an interesting lawsuit in that both companies deal in the manufacture and sale of alcohol beverages which Chateau Grand Traverse says has led to confusion among customers.
Read the full article below...