German gummy bear vs. Swiss chocolate teddy in trademark battle

BERLIN – A German gummy bear is taking on a foil-wrapped Swiss chocolate teddy in a legal showdown.

Cologne’s regional court decides Tuesday on a complaint brought by Germany’s Haribo GmbH against Switzerland’s Lindt & Spruengli AG over alleged trademark violations.

Haribo, which invented the ubiquitous gummy bear almost a century ago, claims that Lindt’s chocolate bear wrapped in gold foil called “Goldteddy” violates the Bonn-based company’s “Goldbaer” trademark.

Haribo argues the two products often end up side-by-side on shelves and that the similar names could confuse consumers.

Lindt says there are enough differences to avoid confusion. It also says the Haribo gummy bears are so well known by German consumers they’re not likely to confuse them with anything else.

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