3:50pm

Fri December 2, 2011
Business and the Economy

Makers Mark Trademark Still in Dispute

A long-running dispute over the trademark red wax seal atop Maker's Mark Kentucky-brewed bourbon could be decided by a panel of three federal judges. 

The distinct red wax seal may only serve a decorative purpose, but attorneys for Maker's Mark say it's essential to the brand. They claim Diageo North America and Casa Cuervo violated the Maker's Mark trademark by adding a wax seal to their tequila in 1997. Last year Maker's Mark won an order barring other companies from using a similar seal, but the U.S. 6th District Court of Appeals decided to weigh in on the case on Thursday.

Now the fate of the trademark is in the hands of panel of federal judges. No deadline has been set to decide the case. Maker's Mark spends about $22 million dollars every year marketing its bourbon.