Australian Eco Bananas assert trademark rights

Posted by Josette Dunn on 4th February 2010

Tropical produce importers Fyffes have withdrawn their nomination for the Fruit Logistica Innovation award after Australian Eco Bananas asserted trademark rights to the claimed innovation.

Fyffes of Germany were one of 10 companies who nominated for the FRUIT LOGISTICA Innovation Award (FLIA) 2010 to be presented in Berlin (3 – 5 February 2010) in recognition of outstanding innovation in products and services.

The competition is open to all companies exhibiting at FRUIT LOGISTICA and FRESHCONEX 2010 which have commercially introduced an exceptional innovation to the market in the period from 1 November 2008 till 31 October 2009.

Fyffes, one of the largest tropical produce importers and distributors in Europe, based their nomination for innovation on waxing the tip of their bananas to identify their organic status. They claimed ‘The green wax tip of Fyffes Organic Bananas is an innovative, unmistakable and at the same time attractive indication of the organic, environmentally friendly origin of this product.”

Pacific Coast Eco Bananas an Australian company based in North Queensland created and developed the innovation of the wax tip banana to identity their eco-banana product over the last 10 years. A spokesperson for the company Dianne Sciacca said “we immediately sought legal counsel”.

After receiving evidence of Australian and Overseas trademarks and supporting information Fyffe have now withdrawn their entry from the awards. Ms Sciacca said, “their withdrawal from the award is a satisfactory outcome for our company and eco products, and confirms the value of international trademarks system”.

Freshlogic director Martin Kneebone advises that wax tip is a highly effective way of conveying eco, organic and environmentally friendly benefits to consumers.