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Food & Drink

Changing tastes and trends requires you to protect new innovations and brands

IP in the food & drink sector

The food & drink sector is the biggest manufacturing industry in the UK, contributing £31.1 billion to the economy annually and employing 450,000 people. Global demand for British products, which saw export performance increase 23% from 2018 to £22.9 billion, has helped the sector to achieve considerable success despite the challenges it has faced.

Shifts in consumer trends require food & drink companies to continue to evolve and innovate if they want to retain and attract customers. The rise in healthy eating and growing awareness of the impact of food production on the environment means there is strong demand for new products as well as opportunities for existing products to be reformulated and packaging to be improved. In this competition for market share, intellectual property protection can help businesses to protect new innovations and brands.

Our expertise

Members of our chemical and engineering teams have significant experience in working with the food & drink industries, including Ben Appleton, a former in-house patent attorney of Cadbury and Kraft Foods. We act for a number of global food brands as well as ingredient suppliers and start-up food and drink manufacturing companies.

Food technology encompasses a surprisingly wide range of technical disciplines, from fat, carbohydrate and protein chemistry, extrusion, moulding and forming technologies, through to synthetic organic chemistry and sports nutrition. We have advised on many different intellectual property matters relating to food and drink technologies, from chewing gum and chocolate manufacturing processes, to synthetic ingredients and coffee foaming technologies. We have also advised food clients in successful patent litigation actions in the UK, France, the US and Australia.

We also assist our clients with trade mark and design protection for their brands and packaging.

With members of the team having extensive in-house experience in the food and drink sector, not only are we very experienced in all patent and trade mark matters faced by the food and drink sector, but we also have extensive commercial knowledge and insights into sector trends and needs.

To discuss how we can help your business, please get in touch to speak to a member of our food & drink team.

Our food & drink team

Wilson Gunn