Judge dismisses hot dog lawsuit against Tyson Foods
Court determines there has been minimal confusion between the lines Parks’ and Park’s Finest
A federal judge in Allentown, Pennsylvania, dismissed a lawsuit that accuses Tyson Foods of trademark infringement over the naming of one of its hot dog lines.
Parks LLC filed a suit against Tyson and its Hillshire Brands unit, claiming the Tyson Brand “Park’s Finest” infringes on Parks’ trademark sausage. Parks LLC is owned by former professional football players Franco Harris and Lydell Mitchell, who attended college together at Penn State.
The judge presiding over the case, U.S. District Judge Joseph Leeson, stated that “a reasonable trier of fact could not find that defendants use of the Park’s Finest name on their packaging for their product or their advertisements has a tendency to deceive a substantial portion of their intended audience,” reported Reuters.
Tyson Foods’ Park’s Finest line of hot dogs was introduced in 2014, the same year that Tyson Foods, headquartered in Springdale, Arkansas, acquired Hillshire Brands.
Parks LLC was founded in 1950 in Baltimore, Maryland, but is now headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
This lawsuit over hot dogs failed to cut the mustard. A federal judge threw out a lawsuit accusing Tyson Foods Inc and its Hillshire Brands unit of infringing a trademark belonging to the maker of Parks’ sausages when they used “Park’s Finest” to describe a line of their Ball Park hot dogs. In a decision late Tuesday, U.S.