New Hampshire coffee roaster, The Black Bear, won its 12-year battle against Starbucks, when the Second Court of Appeals confirmed the lower court’s ruling of no trademark infringement. The district court found no likelihood of consumer confusion between the coffee blend called “Charbucks” and the trademark Starbucks.
Starbucks takes an aggressive stance against potential trademark infringers. I blogged in 2006 about many of Starbucks then on-going cases. In the Charbucks case, the survey evidence submitted by Starbucks to try and prove a likelihood of consumer confusion, actually worked against Starbucks and the fact finder in the case did not find it persuasive that consumers were confused.