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Dr Pepper Snapple Group

Dr Pepper Snapple Group

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Published by: AssignmentLab.com on Apr 16, 2014
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 1Dr Pepper Snapple Group Dr Pepper Snapple Group (hereinafter DPS) is one of North America’s leading refreshment beverage companies (DPS). The company markets more than fifty brands of  juices, teas, mixers, waters, carbonated soft drinks and other premium beverages. Among the brands operated by the company are: Dr Pepper, 7 Up, Clamato, Canada Dry, ReaLemon, Schweppes, Snapple, Venom Energy, Orangina, Sun Drop, Sunkist Soda and many others (DPS). DPS is a stand-alone and publicly-traded company. The company operates 21 manufacturing centers and more than 200 distribution centers (DPS). DPS employs approximately 19, 000 people across North America. DPS operates not only in the United States but also in Canada and Latin America (DPS). In the United States, the company primarily distributes soft drinks and non-carbonated beverages. In Mexico and the Caribbean DPS distributes the carbonated mineral water, bottled water and vegetable juice categories. In Canada the company operates such brands as Mott's Apple Juice, Mott's Clamato, Canada Dry, Dr Pepper, Crush, Mott's Fruitsations, Schweppes, Orangina, Mott's Garden Cocktail, and Mr & Mrs T mixers and some others. The company’s headquarters is located in Plano, Texas. The company’s mission is to become the best beverage business in America (DPS). In order to complete its mission DPS focuses on building and enhancing leading brands, pursuing profitable channels, categories and packages, fostering its route to market, improving operating efficiency, leveraging its integrated business model (DPS). The company manufactures and sells beverage concentrates in the United States and Canada. Then beverage concentrates are delivered to third party bottlers who combine them with carbonated, water, sweeteners and other ingredients, package it in containers, glass bottles, aluminium cans and sell it as finished beverages to retailers (DPS). Overall, one may observe that company’s operation is concentrated on brands and manufacturing of beverages
 
 2concentrates. Such activity is subject to various laws and regulations. As far as brands are concerned, the company is subject to intellectual property laws including the Lanham Act. Beverage concentrates production is subject to the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, state consumer protection laws and state warning and labelling laws.
 
All new initiatives regarding introduction of new brands and production of new beverage concentrate require compliance with aforementioned laws and regulations. This paper represents an attempt to determine laws applicable DPS operation. In particular the paper discusses intellectual property laws, food laws, consumer protection and labeling laws. The paper also makes recommendation as to how to prevent lawsuits against the company.
Part I: Intellectual property laws
DPS possesses intellectual property which is important to its business. In particular the company possesses copyrights, patents, trademarks, ingredient formulas, and business processes. DPS license some of its trademarks to third parties (DPS). At the same time, DPS also licenses certain trademarks from third parties (DPS). All these transactions are subject to the Lanham Act. In particular, the Lanham Act offers protection to trademarks. The Lanham Act protects four types of marks: trademarks, service marks, certification marks, and collective marks. Trademark is defined as any word, name, symbol, device, or combination thereof which used by producers and suppliers to identify their products and to distinguish them from those ones manufactured by competitors. An example of trademark is Dr Pepper: this mark identifies certain beverage distinguishes it from other similar beverages made by competitors. The Lanham Act provides that trademarks can be registered on the principal register (15 USC § 1052). If DPS wishes to register a new trademark it should file an application and a verified statement in the Patent and Trademark Office and pay a prescribed
 
 3fee (see 15 USC § 1051 (a) (1)). The application should include the following information: applicant’s domicile and citizenship, the date of the first use of the mark by the applicant, the date of the first use of the mark by the applicant in commerce, the goods in connection with which the mark is used and a drawing of the mark (see15 USC § 1051 (a) (2)). Verification statement should specify that: (1) DPS to be the owner of the mark sought to be registered; (2) facts recited in the application are accurate; (3) the mark is used in commerce; (4) to the best DPS ’s knowledge no other person has the right to use such mark in commerce either in the identical form thereof or in such near resemblance thereto as to be likely (see 15 USC § 1051 a (3)). When a trademark is registered, the trademark’s DPS will receive a certificate of registration issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (15 USC § 1057 (a)). Such a certificate constitutes a prima facie evidence of the validity of the registered mark and of the registration of the mark, of the owner’s ownership of the mark, and of the owner’s exclusive right to use the registered mark in commerce on or in connection with the goods or services specified in the certificate, subject to any conditions or limitations stated in the certificate (15 USC § 1057 (b)). In general each registration is valid for ten years (15 USC § 1058 (a)). Each registration may be renewed for periods of 10 years at the end of each successive 10-year period following the date of registration upon payment of the prescribed fee and the filing of a written application (15 USC § 1059 (a)). Thus, one may observe that since DPS operates so many brands which are trademarks, it should maintain monitoring of registration time periods in order to avoid invalidation of its trademarks because of expiration dates. Registered trademarks are usually published in the Official Gazette of the Patent and Trademark Office (15 USC § 1062 (a)). Earlier in this paper it has been already mentioned that DPS possess not only trademarks, but also ingredient formulas and business processes. In order to protect these assets DPS should comply with the requirements of the US Patent Act. According to this act

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