News & Analysis as of

Food Litigation Newsletter

THIS NEWSLETTER AIMS to keep those in the food industry up to speed on developments in food labeling and nutritional content litigation. RECENT SIGNIFICANT RULINGS - Motion to Dismiss Granted in Part, Denied in Part...more

Brandmarking: The Naked Truth About Wine And Beer - November 2015 • Volume 4, Number 5

In January 2009, an Australian company named Innvopak Systems applied to register WINEBUD as a trademark for (three guesses?) wine. Perhaps anticipating trouble, Innvopak expressly stated in its application – not once but...more

TTAB finds confusion between Winebud wine and Bud beer | World Trademark Review

In Anheuser-Busch LLC v Innvopak Systems Pty Ltd (Case No 91194148, August 19 2015) (precedential), the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) has found that the applicant’s mark WINEBUD for wine is confusingly similar to...more


You might be familiar with the popular mid-90s commercials suggested by the title of this post. However, the intention of this post is about the use of trademarks on beer to refuse trademark protection for wineries and vice...more

Africa Update - October 2015 #2

Leading the News - Libya: On October 8th, The Washington Post provided an update on the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s (ISIL) activities in Sirte, Libya. Since taking hold of Sirte earlier this year, ISIL...more

SABMiller Accepts $104 billion Offer from AB InBev

SABMiller has accepted a takeover proposal from Anheuser-Busch InBev, the world’s largest brewer, in a deal that would include cash and stock worth 68 billion pounds ($104.4 billion). The new conglomerate would brew more than...more

Handmade, Craft, and Imported: Alcohol Beverage Makers Battle False Labeling & Advertising Claims

In the past couple years, there have been several consumer class action lawsuits filed against alcohol beverage makers claiming that their labels or marketing campaigns are false or misleading. Several lawsuits have been...more

Trademark Review | September 2015

The TTAB Finds Confusion Between WINEBUD Wine and BUD Beer The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) found that Applicant’s mark WINEBUD for wine is confusingly similar to Anheuser-Busch’s (“AB”) BUD mark. The TTAB...more

Is There No Room for a Queen of Beer?

Anheuser-Busch, LLC (“Anheuser-Busch”) is the leading brewer in the United States and holds about a 46% share of U.S. beer sales to retailers. It has been using its well-known KING OF BEERS trademark for over sixty years and...more

Mega Merger Looming for the Beer Industry

The latest wave in the ever-changing and often turbulent waters of the beer industry is the potential merger of SABMiller with Anheuser-Busch InBev. This potential combination would create a brewery with nine of the world’s...more

The Best Allegation in a Lawsuit

And the award for Best Allegation in a Lawsuit goes to … Overton v. Anheuser-Busch Company....more

Distribution Basics

The process of distribution is critically important to craft breweries; but, it is commonly misunderstood in relation to the overall operational success of a brewery. A common misconception by those entering the craft beer...more

Anheuser-Busch To Sell Distributorship In Compliance With Kentucky Law

The business world and the legal world intersect at many different points, and it is important for business owners to not only keep track of their legal obligations, but also to pay attention to how changes in the law impact...more

Can I Get A Witness (Or At Least A Witness Statement)? NLRB Rules Witness Statements Are Now Fair Game

For over 35 years, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) held that witness statements obtained by unionized employers during pre-arbitration investigations were exempt from disclosure to the union. However, on June 26,...more

The National Labor Relations Board Expands Union Access to Witness Statements

On June 26, 2015, in a split 3-2 decision, the National Labor Relations Board (Board), overturned the 37-year-old standard protecting the confidentiality of witness statements taken by employers during workplace...more

“Unpredictable and Potentially Messy”?: NLRB Ruling Could Complicate Employers’ Workplace Investigations

In its June 26 split decision in American Baptist Homes of the West d/b/a Piedmont Gardens and Service Employees International Union, United Healthcare Workers- West, 362 N.L.R.B. No. 139 (Case No. 32-CA-063475) (“Piedmont...more

NLRB Overturns 37-Year Precedent Regarding Duty to Provide Witness Statements to Unions

On June 26, 2015, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) reversed its 37-year precedent, ruling in American Baptist Homes of the West, d/b/a Piedmont Gardens, that employers must disclose to unions confidential witness...more

Advertising Law - July 2015 #2

EPIC Drives Uber Complaint to FTC - Uber’s recent legal woes continue. The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) challenged the ride-sharing company’s new privacy policy and requested that the Federal Trade...more

Beer-Maker Puts an End to Brewhaha: Anheuser Busch Agrees to Settle Second of Two Class Action Lawsuits over Beer Origin...

Anheuser Busch recently agreed to settle a consumer class action over Beck’s Beer labeling that we previously reported on with regard to the uptick in consumer class actions proceeding past the pleading stage in the Southern...more

NLRB Gives Employers a Hangover: Longstanding Anheuser-Busch decision overruled

More than 35 years after its decision in Anheuser-Busch, Inc., 237 NLRB 982 (1978), the NLRB has reversed course and held that employers may no longer summarily reject union requests for witness statements obtained in...more

Board Overrules Longstanding Protections Against Disclosure of Witness Statements

Since 1978, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has treated witness statements as exempt from an employer’s general duty to furnish information to unions under Section 8(a)(5) of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA)....more

NLRB Overrules Longstanding Precedent—Withholding Witness Statements is No Longer a Bright Line Exception

Action Item: The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently held in American Baptist Homes of the West d/b/a Piedmont Gardens that there is no longer a blanket exemption for witness statements from an employer’s Section...more

Changing Protected Status of Land Requires CEQA Compliance

In Paulek v. Western Riverside County Regional Conservation Authority, the California Court of Appeals, Fourth District, held that removal of the protected status from a parcel of land still needs to comply with the...more

NLRB Overrules Precedent; Allows Unions Easy Access to Employee Witness Statements

For nearly 40 years, the National Labor Relations Board has followed a bright-line rule pursuant to which an employer is privileged to withhold witness statements from unions. In its 1978 Anheuser-Busch Inc. decision, the...more

Legislation Enhances Florida Craft Beer Industry

While many states, including such craft beer meccas as Colorado, Oregon and Vermont, have been embracing the explosion of the craft beer culture in America, Florida has been waging war against craft beer in true...more

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