Britannia Industries sued FMCG major GSK Consumer Healthcare – makers of the Horlicks brand, for trademark and copyright violations of its popular NutriChoice biscuits. In a suit filed in the Madras High Court, Britannia said GSK’s recently launched Horlicks Nutribic biscuit is a copy of its NutriChoice Oats biscuit. GSK on August 20, 2012 launched a new biscuit called ‘Horlicks Nutribic’ in Chennai, which according to Britannia is a slavish copy of its NutriChoice Oats biscuits. On noticing GSK products in shops in Chennai, Britannia immediately approached the Madras High Court, with a stay application restraining GSK from passing off its Horlicks Nutribic biscuits using the trade dress of NutriChoice Oats biscuits and also infringing its registered trademark NUTRIBIX.
Britannia argued before the Madras High Court that Horlicks Nutribic has adopted similar packaging style, colour scheme etc. to ride on the enormous reputation built by Britannia for its NutriChoice brand, over the past 13 years. In an interim order passed by the Madras High Court today, GSK, its directors, employees, agents, distributors and retailers have been restrained from manufacturing, selling and advertising Horlicks Nutribic brand of biscuits with the similar trade dress of Britannia’s NutriChoice Oats biscuits. Further, the Horlicks Company has been restrained from using the Nutribic trade name.