April 24, 2009

Hershey: No Kisses for N.Y. chocolatier

Hershey, the Pennsylvania chocolate maker, says it will take legal action against a New York chocolatier unless it backs off its Kiss trademark.

The Hershey Co. contends the Champagne Kiss confections being sold by chocolatier Jacques Torres infringes on the company's century-old trademark of its Hershey's Kisses products, the New York Post said Friday.

Hershey is concerned that Jacques Torres Chocolate's use of the mark Kiss or Kisses may cause consumer confusion with Hershey, Hershey said in a letter to Torres.

Therefore, we demand that Jacques Torres Chocolate immediately discontinue its use of the mark Kiss or Kisses.

Torres told the Post he was shocked to receive the letter from Hershey this week, insisting his chocolates and their expensive price tags could never be mistaken for the retail chocolates.

Why are they coming after me, the little guy, when no one would mistake their chocolates for mine? Torres said. I respect what they do, but I was shocked when I received this letter.