Trademark Law

Is There Acapulco Gold in Pot Trademarks? Applications Are High

A decision by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to create a category for medical marijuana has fired up companies seeking protection for their product and business names.

Soft drink makers want to trademark Canna Cola and Keef Cola, the Wall Street Journal reports. Companies seek to protect the names Budtrader and Pot-N. A candy maker hopes to trademark “Bhang, the original cannabis chocolate.”

The category, established in April, was short-lived, however. After a Wall Street Journal reporter called, a spokesman said the pot classification would be removed, or “nipped in the bud,” in the words of the headline writer. The story notes that federal law bans marijuana sales, even though several states allow medical marijuana.

Among the law firms helping file the registrations are Knobbe Martens in Southern California and Weide & Miller in Las Vegas. Weide & Miller’s client, a consortium of Colorado pot growers called Panatella, has applied for many well-known names, including Mellow Yellow, Chronic, Maui Wowie and Albino Rhino, the story says.

The PTO received more than 250 marijuana-related trademark applications in the three months after the category was created, although most did not list the specific category, the story says. So far, the PTO has not granted any application.

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