14 Dec 2012

Marmite row spreads to courtroom

8:37 pm on 14 December 2012

A legal dispute over whether jars of Marmite imported from Britain for sale here infringe the trademark of New Zealand-made Marmite is set to be heard in court.

The High Court at Christchurch will hold a hearing - for a summary judgment application - on 26 February.

Sanitarium, which says that it has exclusive rights to use the trademark in New Zealand, suspended South Island production of the spread in March when its Christchurch factory closed for earthquake repairs.

In August, the Customs Service detained 1908 jars that British expatriate Rob Savage imported to sell in retail outlets here.

A Sanitarium spokesperson says the company is happy for Mr Savage to continue importing British products, and selling them under a different name, and had tried to resolve the dispute with him.