The Penn Record May 7, 2015, 3:05pm


A Milwaukee business has sued a Pennsylvania organization, alleging trademark violation.

Lesaffre Yeast Corporation filed a lawsuit April 28 against Red Star Craft House West Chester in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, alleging intellectual property infringement dating to 2012.

According to the complaint, Lesaffre Yeast has produced and sold yeast products to the baking and alcoholic beverage industries for more than 160 years, and one of its leading brands is Red Star Yeast, recognizable within the baking and spirit industries and easily searchable on the Internet.

The suit says the defendant opened its business at the Exton Mall in December 2014 under the name “Red Star Craft House” and using a logo perceived similar to the plaintiff’s mark. The suit alleges the defendant has created misrepresentation, confusion and a sense of false affiliation between the parties, who are unrelated, via its name, branding, marketing materials and signage.

The lawsuit says Lesaffre Yeast received an unsolicited email Feb. 6, from a consumer alerting the company to the presence of Red Star Craft House at the Exton Mall. Subsequently Lesaffre Yeast sent a cease and desist letter to the defendant Feb. 13 requesting a response within 48 hours, which was unanswered, the suit says.

The plaintiff cites the mall enterprise with: unauthorized use and counterfeit of federally registered trademarks under the Lanham Act; false designation of origin; unfair competition; and unjust enrichment.

Lesaffre Yeast seeks injunctive action, actual and treble damages, attorney fees and court costs. The group is represented by attorneys Paul Kennedy and Noah Robbins of Pepper Hamilton in Philadelphia.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania case number: 2:15-cv-02341-RB.

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