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Case detail

B a c k

Directive article Article 6 1. (b)
National ID 10/04016
Country France Decision date 10/05/2012
Common name 10/04016 Decision type Court decision in appeal
Court Cour d''appel de Paris Plaintiff(s) Société Havana Club International and SA Pernod
Court translation Court of Appeals Paris Defendant(s) SAS Etablissements Dugas and Société 1872 Holdings VOF
Subject material information
Keywords misleading advertisingmisleading statementsproduct characteristicsproduct origin

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Headnote

Mentioning a famous geographical location on a product and in related commercial materials whereas the product does not originate from that location constitutes a misleading commercial practice. 

Facts

The defendant sells rum from the Dominican Republic, making several references to Cuba on the bottles and in commercial materials.

The plaintiff, who stated that the products were in no way linked to Cuba and did certainly not originate from Cuba, claimed that this advertising practice constituted an unfair commercial practice for which it requested damages.

In first instance, the court denied the plaintiff's request. 
 

Legal issue

Does mentioning a famous geographical location on a product and in related commercial materials whereas the product does not originate from that location, constitute a misleading commercial practice? 

Decision

The court held that the combination of all the references to Cuba, mostly inaccurate, caused professional resellers, and a fortiori consumers, to believe the product originated from Cuba. Therefore, so the court held, those commercial practices are to be considered misleading.  

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Result

The plaintiff's claim was granted.

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