Tree Brewing Goes Hop Head to Hop Head with Green Flash
In yet another case of lupulin litigation — or the threat thereof — Kelowna’s Tree Brewing served notice on San Diego’s Green Flash Brewing Co. to cease using the name “Hop Head” in BC. Since August 2008, Green Flash has been selling its Hop Head Red Ale in select private liquor stores, mostly in the Lower Mainland. Tree brews Hop Head India Pale Ale.
This is the fourth case in two years in which BC craft breweries have been involved in legal disputes over trademarks. In 2007, Vancouver’s Mark James Group demanded Victoria’s Phillips Brewing stop using the name Blue Truck because it was too similar to its Red Truck brand. Last year, England’s Wychwood Brewery threatened punitive action against Vancouver’s R&B Brewing as they felt the market would be confused between the latter’s Hop Goblin’ India Pale Ale and their Hobgoblin Ale. (Memo to Wychwood: we aren’t confused and are pissed off you think us to be that stupid.) Also last year, Sleeman took Aldergrove’s Dead Frog to task over use of clear bottles. Dead Frog isn’t backing down and will battle it out in the courts.
TFP’s Take: There are many nicer ways to go about this, and there is one example that should be referred to. Avery Brewing’s Collaboration Not Litigation. It’s a great story of two breweries who decided to take two great brews sharing the same name, and blending them to create another great beer. Make no mistake about it, we are huge fans of Green Flash, so please contact Tree Beer by following this link. Hound them to make the right decision. http://treebeer.com/page.php?pageID=118.
For the full story visit B.C. Beer Blog