Cadbury has struck a blow against arch rival Nestlé in their long-running legal dispute of the use of Cadbury’s famous purple branding.

The UK Intellectual Property Office yesterday denied Nestlé’s bid to have Cadbury’s trademark of the colour revoked.

The Swiss manufacturer claimed that the colour, known formally as pantone 2865c and trademarked by Cadbury in 2008, was not sufficiently distinctive.

However, the latest ruling, which comes after a three-year battle in the courts, applies only to chocolate bars and drinks. The patent office has yet to decide whether to extend the trademark to cover all chocolate products.

“This is a long-running action by us to protect our famous colour purple and we’re pleased with this ruling,” said a spokesman for the Dairy Milk maker. “This colour is clearly associated to Cadbury and something we jealously guard.”

Nestlé said in a statement: “Contrary to what has been reported, in its interim decision the UK Intellectual Property Office has accepted Cadbury’s [trademark] application only for some of the goods for which Cadbury had applied and rejected it for others, in line with Nestlé’s request.

“We will assess the final decision once it has been issued.”

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