Brand Battles: Mars Says Hershey Can’t Own ‘Scary’ Candy

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Picture of Andrew Rapacke
Andrew Rapacke is a registered patent attorney and serves as Managing Partner at The Rapacke Law Group, a full service intellectual property law firm.

Mars and Hershey are bracing for Halloween early this year as they face off over “Scary” candy. Mars recently filed a Notice of Opposition to Hershey’s trademark application for “SCARY” in International Class 30 for candy.

Mars argues that SCARY is no less generic than “Trick or Treat,” “Boo,” and “Spooky,” all of which would arguably be too generic or commonly used to be capable of registration.

The arguments against the trademark have mixed likelihoods of success since SCARY does not have a clear nexus to the nature or function of the candy itself; however, there could be a strong argument that it conveys to customers that the goods are Halloween related.



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