MADISON, Wis. – Candy maker Mars Inc. is suing a Wisconsin woman over chocolates she is selling under a name that the company says is "confusingly similar" to its cocoa extract supplements called CocoaVia.
The McLean, Virginia-based company says in a federal lawsuit filed March 24 that the chocolates sold in Madison by Syovata Edari (see-oh-VAH'-tuh ah-DAHR'-ee) will likely "confuse and deceive consumers" because they're branded as CocoVaa. The company contends the similarity in the brand names hurts Mars' reputation and Edari should be barred from using CocoVaa on her products.
Edari said Tuesday the lawsuit is "trademark bullying" and noted her chocolates are distinctly different than the products Mars sells.
Edari says she picked her brand name because "Vaa" was her father's nickname for her as a child. Her trademark was registered March 14.