Beyond Meat Inc. filed a petition on January 7 asking the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board to cancel the registration of the BEYOND CHEESE trademark which was registered in February 2019 by Beyond Cheese LTD.
Beyond Meat reportedly filed an application for a BEYOND CHEESE trademark in October 2020, which was rejected by the United States Patent and Trademark Office because of its similarity to the respondent’s trademark. As grounds to ask for the mark’s cancellation, the petitioner cited that there would be a likelihood of confusion between its goods and the respondent’s goods and that the respondent has abandoned the mark and it is not currently in use.
Beyond Meat claimed that it has been damaged by the registration of the BEYOND CHEESE mark, and that it will continue to receive damage from the trademark. Beyond Meat owns multiple trademarks based on its name, including BEYOND MEAT, BEYOND CHICKEN, BEYOND BURGER, and GO BEYOND. The plaintiff explained that these marks have been used in interstate commerce and are connected with vegetarian meat products.
The plaintiff further explained that it has “made a substantial investment” promoting its family of marks which have come to represent vegetarian products, and plant-based substitutes for meat, and has built goodwill related to the trademarks since 2012 when it received the BEYOND MEAT trademark registration in international class 29, the same class that the BEYOND CHEESE mark is registered in.
Beyond Cheese, a United Kingdom company, reportedly registered its trademark for use with vegan, dairy free, gluten free, and lactose free cheese products, made from nuts, beans, or seeds. The plaintiff explained that this use is similar to its use of Beyond trademarks and that its customers may assume that products marked with the BEYOND CHEESE trademark are sold by the plaintiff.
The complaint, however, reported that the defendant has discontinued the use of its trademark “and has no intent to resume such use,” and that it would not be detrimental to the respondent to have its trademark cancelled. The respondent’s social media pages reportedly “do not display any evidence” of the BEYOND CHEESE trademark.
Beyond Meat is represented by Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.