According to a news source, Jack Daniel’s Properties, Inc. has filed a trademark infringement action against the companies that produce and sell Popcorn Sutton’s® Tennessee white whiskey. Jack Daniels Props., Inc. v. J&M Concepts, LLC, No. 13-1156 (M.D. Tenn., filed October 18, 2013). The whiskey is apparently named after an Appalachian moonshiner who killed himself rather than serve a federal sentence after he was convicted of offenses relating to moonshine production. The defendants purportedly sold their product first in mason jars, but then switched to bottles that allegedly copy Jack Daniel’s bottle—“a square-shaped bottle with angled shoulders that house a signature and beveled corners, and labeling with a white-on black color scheme, filigree designs, and font style reminiscent of that of the Jack Daniel’s trade dress,” the complaint said. Alleging willful trademark infringement, deceptive trade, fraudulent misrepresentation, and unfair competition, the company seeks injunctive relief, disgorgement of unjust profits and damages. See Courthouse News Service, October 22, 2013.


Issue 501

About The Author

For decades, manufacturers, distributors and retailers at every link in the food chain have come to Shook, Hardy & Bacon to partner with a legal team that understands the issues they face in today's evolving food production industry. Shook attorneys work with some of the world's largest food, beverage and agribusiness companies to establish preventative measures, conduct internal audits, develop public relations strategies, and advance tort reform initiatives.