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Food fight for Arnotts and Krispy Kreme

Arnott’s, maker of the iconic Iced Vo-Vo biscuit for over a century, is threatening legal action against the Krispy Kreme doughnut chain if it doesn’t stop selling “Iced Dough-Vo” doughnuts.

Arnott’s lawyers Mallesons Stephen Jacques have sent a letter to Krispy Kreme alleging Iced Dough-Vo doughnuts infringed the biscuit maker’s intellectual property.

It said the name given to the doughnuts, topped with a pink fondant icing sprinkled with coconut, was deceptively similar to Arnott’s Vo-Vo trademarks and sounded almost identical.

Arnott’s gave the Australian arm of the doughnut chain until COB last Friday to stop using the name and to undertake not to use similar names in the future.

But Krispy Kreme Australia CEO John McGuigan said after taking legal advice, the company had decided to continue selling the Iced Dough-Vo.

He said the Iced Dough-Vo and a Rocky Road doughnut were part of a Fair Dinkum Doughnuts promotion that aimed to “put a smile on the faces of our customers and, in a sense, pay homage to some Aussie household favourites”.

He said Krispy Kreme customers understood the difference between a doughnut and a biscuit.

“The word iced is pretty well used, and the word dough I don’t think has got anything to do with what Arnott’s do, and the word ‘vo’, I’m not sure what it means, but it goes well with dough.”

Arnott’s has been using the Vo-Vo, Iced Vo-Vo and Iced Vo Vo trademarks since first registering the Vo-Vo name in 1906.

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