“Nespresso” must tolerate competitor coffee

The company wanted to have its competitors ethical coffee company and betron ordered to label their cheaper coffee capsules with the statement that they are not suitable for "nespresso. (file numbers 4b O 81/12 and 4b O 82/12)

According to the court, however, the coffee capsule is a component but not the functional "heart" of the overall patented "nespresso" machine. Their buyers were entitled to expect that they could use the device not only with the original capsules intended for it, it says in the ruling. The lawyer for the defendant companies also argued that the coffee capsules are a common commodity.

The market for portioned coffee is extremely lucrative and fiercely contested. It grew by 30 percent last year, although the capsules are much more expensive than loose coffee and leave behind a lot of gauze. The ethical coffee company, against which nestle has now lost in court, advertises capsules that decompose by themselves in waste. The head of the company is jean-paul gaillard, who previously headed nestec for ten years and is considered the father of the success of nespresso.

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