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IP Information & News

08 November 2017

Can you register the name of a cake?


It has been reported in the press that the iconic Yorkshire business Bettys & Taylor Group Limited has raised objections against a fellow Yorkshire café’s use of their famous FAT RASCAL trade mark.

Fat Rascals

Bettys & Taylor Group Limited is renowned for its famous cafes. They are the owners of several trade mark registrations in the UK for FAT RASCAL.  For those of you not in the know (and who haven’t visited a Bettys café), a Fat Rascal is a fruity scone.

Bettys has raised objections against the use of FAT RASCAL by Sandgate Coffee & Delights - a small café in Whitby - on the basis of their trade mark registrations.

In light of the objections, Sandgate Coffee and Delights has agreed to change the name of their scones to Whitby Fatties.  However, the case reported by the BBC stated that Mr Whittaker (one of the business owners) didn’t think that someone could actually register a name for a cake.  

So, can you register the name of a cake?

The simple answer is yes. Provided that the trade mark in question is not the generic name for the particular cake e.g. fruit scone, chocolate muffin etc. then the name of a cake can be registered.  There are many examples of this across the trade marks register including the famous Mr KIPLING brand FRENCH FANCIES.  However, there are some caveats to the above including questions such as:

•    Is the trade mark really yours to register?  
•    Is it a trade mark that you have coined or something that a business has simply adopted?
•    Is this the name that the general public uses to refer to the cake/product in question?

To discuss the possibility of registering a potentially generic trade mark, contact Sarah Atkinson in our trade marks team on 0113 245 2388 or sxa@udl.co.uk.