South Africa: KZN Honey Widow Goes Toe-to-Toe With Retail Giant

analysis

In a case reminiscent of KwaZulu-Natal-based craft soda maker Frankie's showdown with Woolworths, a small Pietermaritzburg-based honey enterprise is staring down the corporate tactics of Food Lover's Market.

Debbie Power and her team of five are purveyors of the "finest" totally natural and 100% local honey available in KZN. The business, Nature's Gold, has been Power's happy buzz, till she discovered the retail giant was riding roughshod over her trademark rights. Her efforts to seek redress since 2019 have been rebuffed by Food Lover's Market (FLM) on grounds other than the legitimacy of the trademark.

Debbie Power with her merchandise. (Photo: Supplied)

The online presence of Nature's Gold honey speaks volumes about two very different versions of a brand that is contested by the feisty widow and an insouciant Food Lover's Market. While the name under FLM pops up as a Top 10 Google search, a trawl for honey entrepreneur Debbie Power is traced to a humble toehold on Facebook.

Since 2019, Power has been fighting a trademark war with Food Lover's Market.

At issue is a trademark for Nature's Gold registered by Power's husband Andrew, who thought the name had a sweet ring to it, in 2011. Modest by...

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