N.D. Ga.

Grill Manufacturer on Hot Seat for Patent and Trademark Infringement, Unfair Competition

North Atlantic Imports, LLC v. A&J Manufacturing, LLC, Civil Action No. 1:22-cv-02436-VMC (June 17, 2022)

On June 17, 2022, Plaintiff North Atlantic Imports, LLC filed suit against A&J Manufacturing, LLC in the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta Division) for patent and trademark infringement, deceptive trade practices, and unfair competition. Plaintiff manufactures and sells products for outdoor cooking, including griddles with a side shelf, under the brand name BLACKSTONE and using the federally-registered trademark “COOK ANYTHING, ANYTIME, ANYWHERE.” Plaintiff’s gas griddles are covered by U.S. Patent No. 11,116,361, which is owned by Plaintiff.

The Complaint alleges that Defendant uses the mark “COOK ANY MEAL, ANYTIME, ANYWHERE” to sell their own, infringing flat iron griddles at retailers such as Menards and Home Depot. Defendant allegedly “has a pattern of creating products that mimic Plaintiff’s products,” including Plaintiff’s griddle seasoning and other products, and therefore “designed the Accused Products with the intent to copy Plaintiff’s patented design and profit therefrom.” Defendant’s tagline, “COOK ANY MEAL, ANYTIME, ANYWHERE” is allegedly identical to Plaintiff’s registered trademark in sound, appearance, and meaning except that the phrase “anything” has been replaced by “any meal” and is therefore likely to cause confusion as to the source of the products in the minds of consumers. Plaintiff alleges it sent Defendant demand letters regarding its claims of infringement on February 16, 2022 and March 15, 2022. While Defendant acknowledged the letters in responses dated March 22, 2022 and April 18, 2022, it continued to make, use, and sell the allegedly infringing products.

The Complaint asserts causes of action for (1) infringement of U.S. Patent No. 11,116,361 in violation of 35 U.S.C. 271, (2) trademark infringement in violation of 15 U.S.C. 1114, (3) violation of the Georgia Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act (O.C.G.A. 10-1-373), and (4) common law unfair competition. Plaintiff seeks injunctive relief, an accounting of Defendant’s profits, actual damages, reasonable royalties, and disgorgement of profits, and attorneys’ fees and costs. The case has been assigned to Judge Calvert.

Categories: N.D. Ga., Patent, Trademark

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