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Craft Beer Trademarks: Beer vs. Wine


If you encounter a wine and a beer with the same brand name, would you assume that they came from the same company? Would you think your favorite winery had expanded into the beer market, or your favorite brewer had begun bottling wine as well? This is the essence of a longstanding issue in trademark law. The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) tends not to allow a trademark application for beer to proceed if the same or a similar mark is registered for wine, and vice versa. Does this really make sense? And what can be done about it?

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