WEDNESDAY, 15 JULY 2009
No, this is not another case about Knut the German Icebear. The above CTM was registered for mineral water. A competitor filed for nullity of the mark because it was descriptive of the geographic origin of the goods. The OHIM and the CFI dismissed the action.
Art. 7(1)(c) of Council Regulation no. 40/94 does not bar the registration of geographic terms as Community trade marks if it is unlikely that the relevant consumers will assume that the goods claimed come from the place indicated because of inherent characteristics of that place.
Alaska is primarily known for its mountains and forests, its oil, gas and wood production. The relevant consumers do not associate Alaska with the production of mineral water and they do not expect that mineral water from Alaska will be imported into the territory of the EU in the future; namely also because of the high cost of transportation.
Appeal dismissed (German).