A panel of federal judges has found that Smith’s Consumer Products’ Edgeware trademark is confusingly similar to EdgeCraft Corporation’s EDGECRAFT trademark and has ordered cancellation of three Edgeware trademark registrations. In his decision, Judge Anthony R. Masiello, who wrote the opinion for the three-judge panel, agreed with EdgeCraft’s contention that it’s likely that some people have been confused by the similarity between the two brand names for similar products.
Smith’s Consumer Products’ CEO Dan Glidden reacted to the ruling with predictable disappointment. “While we strongly disagree with this decision, Smith’s Consumer Products, Inc., with over 127 years of experience in the knife sharpening category, stands behind our extensive line of Edgeware and Smith’s sharpening products and kitchen tools,” he said in a prepared statement.
EdgeCraft Corporation President Sam Weiner said he was pleased by the decision. “It should help us address the concerns expressed by many of our retailers about the confusion created by Smith’s use of the Edgeware mark on store shelves, in catalogs and on the web,” he said for the press release in which his company announced the outcome of the litigation. “The federal judges’ decision validates our concerns, which ultimately are to protect consumers so they can purchase EDGECRAFT and CHEF’SCHOICE sharpeners and other products without any fear of confusion–and with the confidence that they are buying the quality EDGECRAFT products that they intended to buy.”
Smith’s Consumer Products plans to continue selling knife sharpeners and kitchen tools for the home cook, Glidden said. “At this point we are evaluating our options and are committed to resolving this issue as quickly as possible.”