In 1938 Coca-Cola applied for and received a New Zealand trademark for the shape of the bottles it used. The certificate of registration and the design are shown here. As part of the company’s international push to prevent the competition using a similar bottle, the registration was used in 2010, when Coca-Cola took Pepsi to court over that company’s new ‘carolina’ bottle. Like Coca-Cola’s bottle, the carolina had a ‘waist’ and three dimensional ridging, it was the same size and it bore a logo. Coca-Cola lost the case. There was no evidence of consumer confusion between Coca-Cola and Pepsi, and the waist (the major similarity between the bottles) was declared a common feature with a functional element to it, as it provided an easy handhold.
Using this item
Archives New Zealand - Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga
Reference: ABPJ 7554 W4989 14039
This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 New Zealand Licence