Magic Hat and West Sixth Brewery Conflict
It is becoming more and more evident that the craft beer industry is no longer just giggles and unicorns. Today it was announced in Business Lexington that the latest case of brewery versus brewery litigation came in the form of Magic Hat Brewing Company, claiming that West Sixth Brewery in Lexington, KY intentionally copied their logo and has caused them “irreparable harm”. They are now seeking damages and all profits made by West Sixth up until this point.
Magic Hat Brewing was originally based out of Burlington, Vermont and is now owned by North American Breweries, a conglomerate that also owns Genessee Brewing Company, Dundee Brewing Company, Pyramid and MacTarnahan’s.
According to a blog post from West Sixth Brewery, Magic Hat claim’s that the 6 in West Sixth’s logo drew similarities to the 9 of their Magic Hat #9 and claimed that the 6 should be considered an “inverted 9”. Also according to West Sixth’s blog post, the brewery attempted to reach out to Magic Hat officials to reach an amicable agreement, but never heard back on their requests.
“We think their claims are completely without merit, and we plan to defend our right the best that we can,” said West Sixth Brewery co-founder Ben Self.
Much like the cases of Strange Brew Homebrew Shop’s litigation against Strange Brewing Company, and Sixpoint’s case again Renegade Brewing’s use of Ryeteous Rye IPA, the trend of beer wars continues to grow. This instance however involves a macro brewery, which this past year ranked 6th overall in beer sales by volume nationally, bullying a micro brewery, who in their first year of existence, only produced close to 2000 barrels.
Local businesses have already begun rallying to West Sixth support. Within 5 hours of launching www.nomoremagichat.com the site has already garnered close to 3,500 signatures. “People value West Sixth and the huge impact they’ve had on this community, it’s great to see the out pouring of support as a result,” said Steve Baron of Local First Lexington.
“We just urge people to keep spreading the word on this story, sign the petition and come out and drink our beer,” said Self.