Copycat’ row over Blue and Pink RTDs

20 January, 2009

Halewood International is facing allegations that its new Pretty In Pink and Out of the Blue RTD products are copycat brands.

Independent producer Alcohol Brands, headed by Lorraine Griffiths, is taking legal advice and intends to issue a solicitor’s “cease and desist” letter to stop sales of the Halewood products.

She alleges that the brands use “similar packaging and marketing materials” to her own Baby Pink and Baby Blue products.

They were launched in 2007 and have been distributed through a network of wholesalers including Halewood’s Classic Drinks operation.

“I’ve had people in touch asking why I’ve changed the brand name when of course I haven’t," Griffiths said.

“I have worked really hard to create Baby Pink and Baby Blue and I can’t believe that Halewood can launch something which I think is virtually identical, or at least close enough to cause confusion.

“The implications for my small company don’t bear thinking about.”

A Halewood spokesman said he was “surprised" by the allegations.

“We have not received any communication on this issue either from [Lorraine] Griffiths, her company, or its solicitors, and until correspondence is received we do not feel it appropriate to comment on the details relating to this issue.

“However, it is worth pointing out that the market sector in which these products are sold is highly competitive and as such there are numerous similar products available, so at face value we would strongly question the validity of such a claim.”

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