3 Dimensional Trademarks & the Ferrero Rocher Enigma




The essential domestic enactment administering trademarks in India is the Trademarks Act 1999 and the Trademarks Rules 2017. It is a type of Intellectual Property Right. Intellectual property which is a blend of copyright, trademark, design, geographical indication, patent, industrial design, incorporated circuit, is important resources of any organization. IP can make solid rivalry in the market; thus the maker and merchants can build up their items all the more adequately. A trademark incorporates any word, name, image, or gadget, or any combination, utilized, or planned to be utilized, in business to recognize and recognize the products of one maker or dealer from merchandise made or sold by others and to show the wellspring of the merchandise. A trademark is a brand name. Trademark is an imprint, mark or image which is fit for recognizing the products or services of one from those of others.

3 Dimensional Trademarks

A 3 Dimensional imprint can be applied for when an item hangs out in the pertinent item showcase because of its shape or its packaging. Applications for a 3D trademark are evaluated by different components. It’s anything but a conventional trademark, as in it doesn’t contain 2D components of only words, numerals or figures. It is in reality an unmistakable segment of the item. The packaging of the Ferrero Rocher chocolate would comprise to be a 3D mark. Different models may incorporate the state of the Coca-Cola bottle, the 4-bar state of the KitKat chocolate, and the bundling of a Toblerone chocolate bar.

In such cases, the fundamental inquiry is whether the application mark is discernable from different items by the goodness of the shape, or in the event that it has procured a notable notoriety because of that shape or its packaging. The court doesn’t simply take a gander at how such items are promoted and publicized, yet it takes a gander at the open gathering of the item. In the event that the shape or its packaging has become interlinked with the product itself, and the shape/bundling helps its shoppers in a split second to remember the product, it assumes a critical job in allowing the trademark.

Ferrero Rocher Enigma

In December 2019, the Intellectual Property Office of Singapore passed a request declining the award of a 3D trademark to the Italian chocolatier Ferrero. The organization has a trademark over the word ‘Ferrero Rocher’, which it utilizes for its chocolate-secured praline balls. Every chocolate ball is wrapped with folded brilliant paper, has an oval sticker with the word mark ‘Ferrero Rocher’, and is situated on a creased earthy colored paper base. It has applied to secure and protect this one of a type of packaging of the chocolate as a 3D trademark in 2013.

In any case, in the request, IPOS declined to enroll the trademark expressing absence of peculiarity. It expressed in its request that Ferrero had neglected to show that the imprint had obtained uniqueness of its own. It further expressed that it has not been demonstrated that clients would partner such a bundled chocolate exclusively with Ferrero Rocher without the oval sticker. In declining to enroll the trademark, the IPOS contemplated that the components tried to be secured didn’t make it unmistakable, yet could be simply taken a gander at as embellishing bundling material.

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In 2018 the Delhi High Court granted damages to Ferrero, against a Chinese manufacturer for encroaching its exchange dress. Ferrero had depended on the acknowledgment of ‘Ferrero Rocher’ as a notable trademark, and had asserted that the respondent abused its trademark by replicating its exchange dress.[1]

The High Court contemplated that the closeness in the bundling between Defendant’s items and Ferrero’s chocolate encroached the last’s privileges under the Section 29(5) Act.[2]

The Court decided to harmonize the trade dress protection as a dignitary and notable trademark taking into account the importance of Section 2(1)(zg) to be read with 11(6) of the Act.[3] A ramification of this is Ferrero Rocher now has trademark over its packaging, likewise it has been allowed a 3D trademark. Falling in accordance with different points of reference, this judgment additionally gave a sweet triumph to Ferrero.

Position in India

In India, the Trade Marks Act 1999 accommodates certain conditions to be satisfied for an imprint to be a trademark. The Act sets out the accompanying conditions that the mark ought to be equipped for being spoken to graphically and the mark ought to recognize the products or administrations of one individual from those of others.[4]

This infers even non-traditional marks must agree to the previously mentioned conditions to be a trademark. The state of graphical portrayal is the fate of specific pertinence at that point. Smell marks, sound imprints, shape marks, shading marks must be spoken to graphically. Luckily, India has consistently invited non-regular trademarks. Indian Trademark Registry conceded insurance to the state of ZIPPO lighters path in 19963. India’s first stable trademark was given to Yahoo.

India has likewise built up its law to suit and address the worries identifying with graphical portrayal of non-traditional trademarks and has given a Manual of Trademarks, Practice and Procedure in 2015 (hereinafter, the “Manual”) to help the candidates. The Manual records down the necessities to be satisfied by the candidate in instances of non-conventional trademarks, including smell or fragrance marks, shading marks, alongside sticking to the prerequisites under of the Act as mentioned earlier.


One of the most critical contemplations in giving a non-traditional trademark is whether it has gained noteworthy uniqueness. There must be firm proof to show that clients can perceive the bundling without the related word mark. Minor proof of publicizing in the bundled structure can’t validate buyer acknowledgment. It should likewise be indicated that the bundling of Ferrero Rocher has in actuality procured enough peculiarity to be viewed as a notable trademark in the applicable item showcase.

[1] Ferrero Spa v. M/s Ruchi International (CS(COMM) 76/2018).

[2] The Trade Mark Act 1999, sec. 29(5)

[3] The Trade Mark Act 1999, sec. 2(1)(zb), 11(6).

[4] See Supra note 3


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