YALUMBA HAS DECIDED NOT TO PURSUE an appeal to the Full Bench of the Federal Court after losing a Trade Mark decision late in 2016. Today (January 27) was the final day for an appeal to be lodged. Yalumba lost a Federal Court trademark case it hoped would prevent Jacob’s Creek from using the word ‘signature’ to describe a range of Barossa wines.
The case was dismissed on December 14, 2016, but in making the determination Judge Natalie Charlesworth acknowledged Yalumba’s rights in its Trade Mark for “The Signature” and found Trade Mark usage by Pernod Ricard.
Since 1966 Yalumba has produced a premium Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz blend and labels it with the signature of one of the members of the winery team (for example, the 2013 vintage carries the signature of Andrew Murphy – Yalumba’s executive director of wine).
The action from Yalumba followed the release of three red wines from Jacob’s Creek, owned by Pernod Ricard Winemakers, under the Barossa Signature range in September 2015.
Lawyers representing Yalumba claimed Pernod Ricard had used “deceptive similarity” when it used the ‘signature’ branding. However, Pernod Ricard rejected the notion, arguing the label reflected both the wine’s geographical location and characteristics, and ‘signature’ was used adjectively.
Robert Hill-Smith, Yalumba proprietor, said he was disappointed by the judgement and what he said was “poor etiquette and market behaviour” from Pernod Ricard Winemakers. Continue reading