Hotel chocolat has opened a new front in its chocolate war with waitrose, the provision of legal threats and offering customers an “Amnesty” on alleged supermarkets wannabe bars.
Prestigious chocolatiers invites everyone who bought one of the sugar-heavy chain lb 2 bars to exchange it for £3.95 hotel chocolat slab, which lists cocoa as the main component.
Hotel chocolate also increases the load on the network, instructing their lawyers to write to the supermarket, demanding that it removes the bars from the sale by the end of the day and destroy them.
Events to exacerbate the dispute of plagiarism, which began when the hotel chocolate co-founder Angus Thirlwell accused the network last week copy of its flagship series of lush chocolate “chunks”.
Waitrose and hotel chocolat bars. Photo: Linda Nylind for the guardian
In accordance with the terms of the Amnesty chocolate, customers didn’t eat all the bar and chain just to provide a hotel chocolat store employees empty wrapper.
To get a free slab of hotel chocolate, they have to pass the network version either uneaten or unfinished form, at any time between now and the end of this weekend. A few bar swaps are not allowed.
“We have ‘Slabgate’ Amnesty as a lot of people buy them thinking they are hotel quality chocolate, took a SIP and realized that they are actually full of sugar,” said Thirlwell.
“People can’t be happy and the point of the chocolate to make people happy, so the most simple thing we can do is to invite people to bring a half-eaten bar and get a free upgrade. We’ll drop a copycat product to cart”.
Thirlwell decided to escalate the issues without waiting for a response from supermarkets during the week, despite the insistence of the company’s management to “do the right thing” last Friday.
He has not yet received a response from the supermarket on Friday morning.
“We are really surprised by the low response, it is not what we expected, given their brand value and the clarity of the situation,” said Thirlwell.
“Every hour that he is coming, we’re worried about damage to the brand. John Lewis profited from our slabs by selling them in their stores. Then their child company trying to get our brand down with a cheap knock-off.
“If the other company is misleading the market, then we demand that the warehouse should be removed and destroyed. We will protect our intellectual property and have a wide range of options available to do this. No one is being taken off the table.
“The deadline is today, but we haven’t got very high hopes for a satisfactory answer.”
Waitrose told the Guardian he did not copy the design Thirlwell.
“We are confident that we have not violated any of the structures of hotel chocolat and we refute all the charges made by Mr. Thirlwell and hotel chocolat. However, it’s not in our interests to engage in a protracted legal dispute with hotel chocolat and so we talk to them directly about these issues.”
The hotel “chocolate” began to ask whether the company making the chocolate under contract to the network last week, noting the similarity between the products of the two companies.
All the network bars are approximately the same size as the chocolat hotel and share a distinctive wavy edge, which distinguishes them from serial bars with straight sides.
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One of the supermarkets bars – made of white chocolate with spikes of meringue and strawberry pieces and the Name Eton mess after the famous pudding is a combination of a nearly identical mix of hotel chocolate with the same name.
Network bar crunch caramel also shares several characteristics with hotel chocolat’s caramel & Co offers, while orange and coffee-flavoured iterations of the Echo products, chocolate stopped.
Said thirlwell hotel chocolat had legal protection for its curved edge Design from the office of the European Union intellectual property.
“He’s inspired by what happens when you pour molten chocolate on the chocolate marble countertops, because it applies in a lovely lush contours,” he said.