ITC drags Britannia to court for copying packaging design

Consumer goods major ITC Ltd has moved the Delhi high court against Britannia Industries for alleged copying its biscuit packaging design. The case, filed on 20 August, will come up for hearing again on 31 August, ITC stated in a notification to stock exchanges.

ITC claimed that Britannia's biscuit brand 'NutriChoice Digestive Zero' has imitated the packaging style of its 'Sunfeast Farmlite Digestive ALL GOOD' biscuit.

''ITC has filed a case against Britannia Industries before the Delhi High Court as Britannia has copied the trade dress and colour combination of ITC's 'Sunfeast Farmlite Digestive ALL GOOD' biscuit packages for its 'Britannia Nutrichoice Digestive Zero' biscuit packages,'' it said.

Sources aware of the matter say ITC's contention is that Britannia's offering  –  roll-out of which has already happened  –  has similar use of yellow and blue colour on the package.
ITC has sought damages for alleged infringement of trademark as well as direction to Britannia to withdraw the product in the current packaging. Both the products are priced at Rs25 for a 100-gram pack.

Britannia Industries, meanwhile, claimed that the Delhi High Court has not issued an injunction.

''The matter came up for hearing before Delhi High Court on August 22, 2016, and August 24, 2016. The next date of hearing is August 31, 2016. No injunction (stay) has been granted as of now,'' Britannia said in a filing to the BSE on Wednesday.

''As the matter is sub-judice, we can't comment anything further on this matter,'' it added.

The Indian biscuit market is pegged at Rs26,000 crore. Britannia, ITC and Parle are said to be the three major national players. ITC has a leadership in the cream-biscuit segment.