A battle over rights to the name of a popular ice cream flavor escalated Wednesday when Haagen-Dazs vowed to seek the cancellation of Baskin-Robbins' Pralines 'N Cream trademark.
Minneapolis-based Pillsbury Co., parent of Haagen-Dazs, said the trademark-infringement suit filed against it last week by Glendale-based Baskin-Robbins Ice Cream Co. was "frivolous and unwarranted." Baskin-Robbins claimed that Haagen-Dazs, based in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., engaged in unfair competition by introducing its Pralines & Cream ice cream flavor last October.
"It is our position that the Baskin-Robbins allegations are entirely false and without merit," said John L. Morrison, a senior Pillsbury executive. He added that Pillsbury is seeking to cancel Baskin-Robbins' Pralines 'N Cream trademark because "we believe that it was improperly or inadvertently issued by the trademark office."
Ronald B. Marley, president and chief executive of Baskin-Robbins, said in a telephone interview from Detroit that he believes it will be "extremely difficult" for Pillsbury to void the 6-year-old Pralines 'N Cream trademark.