Akbarjooje is the name of a famous restaurant in Iran, which serves innovative food, containing rice, fried chicken, and a delicious sauce since 1943. It became so popular and recognized that many restaurants started to serve the food and named it Akbarjooje. Slowly, most people assumed that Akbarjooje is the name of the food and not a brand. Many restaurants started to use Akbarjooje as their mark.
The Akbarjooje owners decided to the Akbarjooje trademark in 2011 and started to sue the infringers. The defendants who were using the mark, in response, brought a cancellation lawsuit against the Akbarjooje owners.
The Court of First Instance rejected the claim, but the Court of Appeal decided to cancel the trademark; based on the fact that Akbarjuje was the name of popular food and a generic name at the time of registration in 2011.
The case went to the Supreme Court. The court held that Akbarjuje is a valid trademark and should be protected. Besides, restaurants can use the Akbarjooje as food in their menus. It seems that the Supreme Court accepted Akbarjooje is the name of food while it can be registered in the name of the first creator. The decision raised many questions among IP scholars about the eligibility of generic names to be a trademark.
What do you think about the decision?