United Biscuits has been ordered to change the packaging for its McVitie's Fig Rolls before launching them in Ireland.
Manufacturer Jacob Fruitfield Food Group, which has a 35% share of the Irish biscuit market, was granted a High Court injunction after claiming the McVitie's packaging was too similar to its own. United Biscuits had already agreed to change the design, but the action centred on packets already distributed to supermarkets and warehouses, which now need to be altered.
McVitie's has a strong presence in Ireland and the range is being extended with two products, fig rolls and cream crackers. A similar complaint by Jacob Fruitfield over the cream cracker packets was rejected by the court.
Jacob's chairman Michael Carey said: "We believe that if McVitie's was to launch its products in the current packaging they could easily be mistaken as Jacob's brands and would cause confusion among consumers."
Paul Parkins, director of United Biscuits in Ireland, said McVitie's cream crackers would be launched immediately. The decision over fig rolls was disappointing, he added, but the company would continue with its plans to amend the packaging.