Cancel Ramar Foods' Magnolia Ice Cream Trademark
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We petition the United States Patent & Trademark Office to cancel Ramar Foods' registration of the Magnolia name and logo for use on ice cream products.
MAGNOLIA ICE CREAM OF THE PHILIPPINES
The Magnolia ice cream brand was commercially established by San Miguel in the Philippines in 1925. For most of the Magnolia brand's history until today, it has belonged to San Miguel Philippines, which has developed a reputation of quality and trust among Filipinos.
In the 1970s, a completely unaffiliated family in Northern California started marking their own ice cream with the very same Magnolia name and logo. Federal judge Richard Clifton in a recent related case stated it had to be for the purpose of capitalizing on the name recognition and goodwill that San Miguel had developed among Filipinos, including those who had migrated overseas.
The Quesada family, by then operating as the Ramar Corporation, formally registered the Magnolia mark with the USPTO in 1990s. They were able to do so despite the fact that it was San Miguel that had created the name, had developed the brand for decades longer than the Quesada family, and was still actively using the name's widely recognized logo in the Philippines.
San Miguel today is legally prevented from selling its well-known Magnolia ice cream in the United States. Any "Magnolia Ice Cream" you see in the USA is manufactured by the Northern California company without any cooperation from the Philippine company.
We hereby put forth the assertion that the USPTO made a mistake in granting Ramar Foods the exclusive right to use the Magnolia mark on ice cream, because Ramar's continued use of the Magnolia mark even decades after the registration is STILL causing confusion among Filipinos, who feel thoroughly bamboozled when finally informed of the facts of the situation.
To this day, the majority of Filipino American consumers assume that the Magnolia they buy in stores in the United States must be related to the brand they or their parents grew up with in the Philippines. After all, they are seeing what is practically THE EXACT SAME LOGO that was Magnolia's logo for decades in the Philippines. In fact, that logo is still used on many products manufactured by San Miguel in the Philippines.
It cannot naturally occur to Filipinos that it isn't the Magnolia of the Philippines because the label essentially has THE SAME LOGO that San Miguel had created and has been using for decades. This is a violation of the right of consumers to be protected from brand-name confusion.
The trademark laws of the United States are intended to protect consumers from confusion. When you see the Starbucks logo, you know it belongs to the Starbucks Corporation. For Filipino Americans, when they see the Magnolia logo, they should be able to safely assume that it is from the Magnolia company that they are familiar with, which is part of San Miguel. That a totally unrelated American company can get away with misleading consumers into thinking it is affiliated with a century-old Philippine company is a travesty.
We therefore petition the United States Patent and Trademark Office to cancel Ramar Foods' registration of the Magnolia trademark for use on ice cream.
Do not legitimize brand piracy. Do not allow trademark piracy to be legal. Protect consumers from confusion.
And May God Bless The Philippines!
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