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Oatly sues UK oat milk maker for trademark

Oatly seeks to stop a Cambridgeshire family farming business from selling an oat drink called PureOaty

Oatly, the plant-based milk maker backed by Oprah Winfrey, is in a legal battle with a Cambridgeshire farm for alleged trademark infringement.

Oatly’s lawyers filed for a High Court injunction on Thursday to prevent Glebe Farm Foods from selling its PureOaty drink.

Oatly said he contacted the makers of PureOaty in early 2020 saying “their branding is damaging our brand.”

Farmer Phillip Rayner, owner of Glebe Farm, said the name PureOaty was “a nod to the purity of the product.”

Mr Rayner said his company started producing the drink from oats grown in Britain around 18 months ago, but Oatly now wants Glebe Farm to stop using the PureOaty brand and change its packaging.

The Cambridgeshire farmer said: “Oatly says the name and packaging are too similar to theirs, but when we compare the two products side by side it surprises us.”

A spokesperson for Oatly said that since the 2020 letter, “we have unfortunately not received any constructive response from them. So we are now involved in an ongoing legal case and we have no further comments pending results “.

The case in the High Court in London is expected to end on Thursday.

Oatly, which was founded in the 1990s and produces an oat-based milk substitute, has grown rapidly in recent years.

Its oat milk is now sold in 60,000 stores and over 32,000 cafes in 20 countries and the company is now worth more than $ 15 billion.

Other famous investors in the company alongside Ms. Winfrey include Jay-Z and Natalie Portman. It has also benefited from investments from the public company China Resources and Verlinvest, an investment company based in Belgium.

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