nadsquad Posted 14 Jan 2014 , 2:32pm
post #1 of

Hello everyone,

 

I had a question regarding using candy brands such as Snickers, Reeses, Almond Joy, Oreo, etc. as cake flavors, cake themes, or even making cakes that whimsically resemble these popular treats … for example, would there be a copyright infringement issue if you call your cake a “Reeses Cake?” I am very curious about this as I see a lot of bakeries and ice cream shops doing this.

Does it make it okay to use the brand name in your product when you are using their candy (so you have already “paid” them) as a topping or a flavor? Would it then be an issue if you are NOT buying their candy to recreate their flavor combination, but calling it by the candy name (example, chocolate cake with pb buttercream and chocolate ganache that you then call “Reeses”)?

I know that there is an obvious way around this- to simply use generic names such as “peanut butter cup”, “cookies and cream”, or even just “candy bar” but there is always a certain added advantage when someone looks at your product and says “Oh look, it’s Reeses!”.

Thank you very much, looking forward to your advice!

21 replies
-K8memphis Posted 14 Jan 2014 , 2:43pm
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back yonder as the computer age started to ripen and we figured out we could print new wrappers for hershey candy bars, andes candies, etc.to market for personalized favors at weddings & parties--the candy companies responded with infringment c & d's--

 

so i could see the same thing here--you even acknowledge the advantage to using their names so without permission it's not the right way to go--

nadsquad Posted 14 Jan 2014 , 2:55pm
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Thank you very much K8memphis ... that was my hunch as well. 

 

I just wonder how on earth nearly every bakery and ice cream shop I see uses these names so freely. It makes me wonder if the rules are more lax than I would expect, or just a matter of no enforcement ...

 

Anyone else have anything to share?

-K8memphis Posted 14 Jan 2014 , 3:10pm
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some of them buy product that comes from the candy maker or from sources that have permission

jason_kraft Posted 14 Jan 2014 , 4:08pm
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AI agree that you should get permission before you use someone else's trademarks in the name of one of your products. However if you are describing the ingredients it's fair game to use a trademark. For example, you couldn't sell an "Oreo Cake" without permission but in the description of a "Chocolate Cream Cookie Cake" on your web site you could say "made with real Oreo cookies".

I would guess that most small businesses who use trademarks in product names do so without permission and don't realize this is an issue.

-K8memphis Posted 14 Jan 2014 , 4:59pm
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true --

 

this is kinda different because it involves product endorsement but on food tv shows they are very careful to avoid showing any kind of brand names right -- and the pioneer woman often uses candy bars and you can tell which ones they are but you don't see any names--i think she says "butterfingers" though in one episode--

 

it's a big deal though--

 

anyhow--

jason_kraft Posted 14 Jan 2014 , 5:36pm
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A

Original message sent by -K8memphis

this is kinda different because it involves product endorsement but on food tv shows they are very careful to avoid showing any kind of brand names right -- and the pioneer woman often uses candy bars and you can tell which ones they are but you don't see any names--i think she says "butterfingers" though in one episode--

This is done to avoid giving manufacturers free advertising...if brand names weren't covered up, there would be no incentive for them to pay for product placement.

costumeczar Posted 15 Jan 2014 , 2:32am
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I have an Etsy shop, and there are people on there who had to remove the word "onesie" from their baby clothes listings because it's apparently trademarked. They're always discussing how they can't use "onesies" in the forums there, which I find amusing, but I guess the people who own the trademark threatened Etsy so they're hardcore about it.

jason_kraft Posted 15 Jan 2014 , 2:51am
post #9 of

A

Original message sent by costumeczar

I have an Etsy shop, and there are people on there who had to remove the word "onesie" from their baby clothes listings because it's apparently trademarked. They're always discussing how they can't use "onesies" in the forums there, which I find amusing, but I guess the people who own the trademark threatened Etsy so they're hardcore about it.

It's not surprising that Gerber is defending their trademark, since "onesies" is in danger of being genericized. I didn't realize it was trademarked either.

costumeczar Posted 15 Jan 2014 , 11:44am

A

Original message sent by jason_kraft

It's not surprising that Gerber is defending their trademark, since "onesies" is in danger of being genericized. I didn't realize it was trademarked either.

I think it's already generic, and I guess everyone else did too. It's like bandaid and scotch tape now, but gerber apparently doesn't like it.

Pyro Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 1:42am

I can tell you for fact companies don't like you to use their name in your product. I know Ferrero make a phone call to a bakery I worked at and the name of one of our cakes was changed to hazelnut, even thought it was full of Ferrero products.

enga Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 1:53am

What about Rice Krispy Treats? For example if a high end bakery had gourmet chocolate dipped ones, would that be an infringement if they used the name?

BeesKnees578 Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 2:03am

Quote:

Originally Posted by costumeczar 
 

I have an Etsy shop, and there are people on there who had to remove the word "onesie" from their baby clothes listings because it's apparently trademarked. They're always discussing how they can't use "onesies" in the forums there, which I find amusing, but I guess the people who own the trademark threatened Etsy so they're hardcore about it.


Then Disney must go NUTS with the people who sell Cricut birthday party paper products (cupcake toppers, treat bag tags, etc...).   I have heard that it's technically illegal to sell anything using the Cricut because all of the content on their cartridges is copyrighted?  Does this sound right Jason?

BeesKnees578 Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 2:03am

PS Sorry to hijack...

costumeczar Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 3:27am

Quote:

Originally Posted by BeesKnees578 
 


Then Disney must go NUTS with the people who sell Cricut birthday party paper products (cupcake toppers, treat bag tags, etc...).   I have heard that it's technically illegal to sell anything using the Cricut because all of the content on their cartridges is copyrighted?  Does this sound right Jason?

I think that Circut lets you sell things using the cake cartridges because when they first came out with them they said you couldn't, but decorators all pitched a fit. So the cake cartridges can be used for cakes that you're selling. It doesn't matter whether they tell you that you can sell trademarked items or not, though, unless they have an agreement with the trademark holder to allow people to sell the characters they make after buying the cartridges. And there is NO WAY that Disney would allow that to happen. The designs on the Circut are all copyrighted by the designer of that cartridge, so unless there's some kind of a release on the cartridge that says you can use it for commercial purpose you're probably not allowed to sell things that you make with the design. But definitely not the Disney ones! I bet if you look at the case the cartridge is in on the character ones, it will say somwhere that it's for personal use only on there somewhere.

enga Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 5:44am

The reason I asked the question is because of this.

 

http://www.disneyfoodblog.com/2011/04/05/goofys-candy-company-create-your-own-snacks/

http://youtu.be/lSPSAU0T2lo

costumeczar Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 12:54pm

A

Original message sent by enga

The reason I asked the question is because of this.

[URL=http://www.disneyfoodblog.com/2011/04/05/goofys-candy-company-create-your-own-snacks/]http://www.disneyfoodblog.com/2011/04/05/goofys-candy-company-create-your-own-snacks/[/URL] [URL=http://youtu.be/lSPSAU0T2lo]http://youtu.be/lSPSAU0T2lo[/URL]

You can bet your life that if Disney is or is not using another company's trademark, they have a licensing agreement with them. If I was a company and Disney asked me for the right to license my name you bet your butt I'd be cutting a deal with them. That's a huge contract and I bet companies are fighting over getting their name into those parks.

enga Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 7:21pm

Quote:

Originally Posted by costumeczar 
 

Quote:

Originally Posted by enga 

The reason I asked the question is because of this.

http://www.disneyfoodblog.com/2011/04/05/goofys-candy-company-create-your-own-snacks/
http://youtu.be/lSPSAU0T2lo

You can bet your life that if Disney is or is not using another company's trademark, they have a licensing agreement with them. If I was a company and Disney asked me for the right to license my name you bet your butt I'd be cutting a deal with them. That's a huge contract and I bet companies are fighting over getting their name into those parks.


Haaa haa haa, that is what I was thinking about last night, is Disney paying them to be featured or are they PAYING Disney to be featured?

 

It just don't see how these high end bakeries in my area are making Oreo, Snickers, Reese's cakes along with gourmet Rice Krispies Treats without changing one letter in the names. One of these bakeries states that their business doesn't make licensed character cakes. 0_0

costumeczar Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 7:59pm

A

Original message sent by enga

Haaa haa haa, that is what I was thinking about last night, is Disney paying them to be featured or are they PAYING Disney to be featured?

It just don't see how these high end bakeries in my area are making Oreo, Snickers, Reese's cakes along with gourmet Rice Krispies Treats without changing one letter in the names. One of these bakeries states that their business doesn't make licensed character cakes. 0_0

Yeah, if the candy people find out about it they would tell them to stop. They don't want their name used if the product stinks.

enga Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 8:45pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by costumeczar 
 
 

Yeah, if the candy people find out about it they would tell them to stop. They don't want their name used if the product stinks.

That's just it costumeczar they are making them with choices of topping like Disney and people are buying them of the shelves like hotcakes, so I wouldn't necessarily say that the products stink, if they did then they wouldn't be buying them. And it is not just locally The Tree House in New York is doing the same thing. But as you said, THEY probably have permission to use the names.

 

I guess what I'm trying to say is that people see other people doing it and they think that it's okay to do it too. They probably don't see it as a copyright infringement because they are using these trade mark candies as a topping and using the real names. As in "Godiva dipped Rice Krispies Treats coated in your choice of name brand candy and candy bars.

 

Another example, how can someone say you're going to get in trouble for making that character cake but they have a "Snickers" and "Oreo" cake on their website? I don't get it, maybe it's just me.

costumeczar Posted 19 Jan 2014 , 8:55pm

Quote:

Originally Posted by enga 
 

That's just it costumeczar they are making them with choices of topping like Disney and people are buying them of the shelves like hotcakes, so I wouldn't necessarily say that the products stink, if they did then they wouldn't be buying them. And it is not just locally The Tree House in New York is doing the same thing. But as you said, THEY probably have permission to use the names.

 

I guess what I'm trying to say is that people see other people doing it and they think that it's okay to do it too. They probably don't see it as a copyright infringement because they are using these trade mark candies as a topping and using the real names. As in "Godiva dipped Rice Krispies Treats coated in your choice of name brand candy and candy bars.

 

Another example, how can someone say you're going to get in trouble for making that character cake but they have a "Snickers" and "Oreo" cake on their website? I don't get it, maybe it's just me.

It's not just you, people just have no idea, or they don't want to.

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