Champagne Jayne court case underway

A case between the CIVC and wine writer and educator Jayne Powell, known as “Champagne Jayne”, has begun in Melbourne Federal Court this week.

Champagne Jayne appear on This Morning with Holly W and Phillip Schofield. Credit: ITV

Champagne Jayne appears on This Morning alongside Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield. Credit: ITV

The Comité Interprofessional du Vin de Champagne (CIVC) is suing Powell for trademark infringement over the use of the word “Champagne” in her name.

It accuses Powell of misleading the public by promoting sparkling wines other than Champagne while using the “Champagne Jayne” name, which, its says, “damages the goodwill of the Champagne sector”.

Powell has been working under the name “Champagne Jayne” since 2003 running Champagne talks, tastings and masterclasses in Australia.

Her book Great, Grand and Famous Champagnes: Behind the Bubbles, won a Gourmand book award in 2011 and she was made a Dame Chevalier de L’Ordre des Coteaux de Champagne in 2012.

Powell trademarked the name “Champagne Jayne” in Australia in 2011. The CIVC filed its first complaint in December 2013.

Under the terms of the case, the CIVC has asked Powell to stop using her @ChampagneJayne Twitter account, which has 21,100 followers, and her Facebook account to promote sparkling alternatives to Champagne. It may also seek compensation for loss and damage to the Champagne brand.

“Although litigation is a challenging exercise both financially and emotionally, I am defending the claim and have every confidence that the decision that the court will ultimately make will be the right one,” Powell said.

“I think the members of the public would expect that the services would predominantly or generally pertain to Champagne but not to the exclusion of anything else,” Powell added in a defence document filed with the court.

A second court case will take place in February regarding the trademarking of the name “Champagne Jayne”.

2 Responses to “Champagne Jayne court case underway”

  1. Mike Murdoch says:

    The CIVC are like terriers and take all and anybody who uses “champagne” in any other context than the wine itself.
    Even if the product has no bearing on the product, like champagne toothpaste!!! SO GOOD LUCK THERE!!! I wish you all the best in your case.

  2. Burgpoodle says:

    I’m not a lawyer, but my common-man’s view would be that it seems Ms. Powell is somewhat misguided in her stance. Whilst accepting that “Champagne Jayne” has done a great deal to promote the cause of Champagne, in Australia in particular, the brand name she has created for herself does suggest that she reserve her expertise to just that : Champagne ! If Ms. Powell wants to promote products other than champagne, then quite simply she should accept that she promote these under a different name, without any reference to champagne. So, the CIVC are right to try and prevent her promoting other products via the “Champagne Jayne” name. Nevertheless the CIVC should perhaps accept her right to continue to use the name Champagne Jayne when speaking about champagne and withdraw their objection for the February case. A bit of compromise on both sides should settle the issue.

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