Market Overview

Corto Olive Sues Gemsa Enterprises for Infringing 51-49® Trademark


Corto Olive, L.P. ("Corto Olive") today announced that it has filed a
lawsuit in United States District Court for the Central District of
California against Gemsa Enterprises, LLC ("Gemsa") seeking to halt
Gemsa's infringement of the 51-49® registered trademark and distinctive
packaging for Corto Olive's brand of blended oil.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

Corto Olive Sues Gemsa Enterprises for Infringing 51-49® Trademark (Photo: Business Wire)

Corto Olive Sues Gemsa Enterprises for Infringing 51-49® Trademark (Photo: Business Wire)

Corto Olive produces and distributes products under the 51-49® brand.
51-49® is used in dressing salads, finishing warm entrees, light
sautéing, and signature sauces and is marketed to restaurateurs through
foodservice distributors.

As shown in the image here, Gemsa, a direct competitor of Corto Olive,
prominently uses the 51-49® trademark in connection with its blend of
extra virgin olive and canola oils. Gemsa's packaging is virtually
indistinguishable from Corto Olive's and is likely to cause confusion
among Corto Olive's customers and potential customers, and irreparable
harm to Corto Olive's business.

"Gemsa's attempt to deceive customers into thinking they are buying our
product, instead of a commodity knock-off, is so flagrant that we had to
take action. We are determined to enforce our rights in every instance
that a competitor attempts to steal our intellectual property, and we
will protect the restaurateurs and foodservice distributors who count on
our trademark as the mark of premium olive oil," said Tom Cortopassi,
Senior Managing Partner of Corto Olive.

The plaintiffs sent Gemsa a letter in May 2018 demanding that it halt
use of the 51-49® trademark, but Gemsa has failed to take corrective
action, leaving Corto Olive with no choice but to seek relief in federal
court. The lawsuit alleges trademark and trade dress infringement under
federal law, and unfair competition violations under federal and
California laws.

Corto Olive, L.P. is a California-based manufacturer of premium olive
oils for restaurateurs, including brands such as 51-49®, TRULY® Extra
Virgin Olive Oil, and La Padella®. Corto Olive was founded by the
Cortopassi family, a farming family from Lucca, Italy, with a
multi-generational reputation as producers of high-quality foods.

View Comments and Join the Discussion!