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Cookie wars: Pepperidge Farm sues Trader Joe's for ripping off Milanos

Posted at 8:44 PM, Dec 07, 2015

A sweet treat has led to some not-so-sweet litigation for premium grocer Trader Joe's.

In a lawsuit filed in a New Haven, Conn. court last Wednesday, baked goods brand Pepperidge Farm sued Trader Joe's for trademark infringement for copying its popular Milano cookie.

The lawsuit states that "Trader Joe's Crispy Cookies" is damaging its goodwill and confusing shoppers, according to a report from Reuters.

Pepperidge Farm's Milano cookie has largely been unchanged since it was released in 1956 — dark chocolate sandwiched between two oval-shaped light wafer cookies. The cookies are even still packaged in a paper bag like they were 60 years.

Pepperidge Farm filed a trademark on the cookie in 2010.

Though the lawsuit acknowledges that the Trader Joe's cookies are more rectangular than oval-shaped, it notes that the Trader Joe version includes rounded edges that mimic Milano's distinctive shape. The lawsuit also makes note of similair packaging used by Trader Joe's.

According to Reuters, is seeking a halt to sales of the Trader Joe's cookie as well as punitive and compensatory payment.

Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.