McDonald’s Loses ‘Big Mac’ Trademark Battle in EU Court

Fast food giant McDonald’s suffered a legal setback in the European Union after a top court ruled they cannot exclusively use the “Big Mac” name for chicken burgers. The decision comes after a long-running dispute with Irish chain Supermac’s, who challenged McDonald’s trademark on the term.

The fight began in 2017 when Supermac’s sought to revoke McDonald’s “Big Mac” trademark registration in the EU. McDonald’s had registered the name in 1996 for meat and poultry products, along with restaurant services.

While the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) initially dismissed Supermac’s request and upheld McDonald’s rights for both meat and chicken sandwiches, the Luxembourg-based General Court overturned that decision. The court ruled that McDonald’s failed to demonstrate sufficient use of the “Big Mac” trademark for chicken products specifically.

McDonald’s maintains its right to use ‘Big Mac’ but can appeal the decision.

Supermac’s Managing Director, Pat McDonagh, hailed the ruling as “common sense.” McDonald’s can still contest the decision in the EU’s highest court.

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