Last year, an individual who owns businesses in the Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York that include a farm market, a boat rental company, and a concierge service filed a trademark application for “Finger Lakin’ Good” in several international classes covering clothing, cheese, entertainment, beer and wine, and more.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the KFC Corporation, owner of Kentucky Fried Chicken, along with several trademarks for the fast-food chain’s “Finger Lickin’ Good” slogan, has filed a Notice of Opposition with the USPTO.
Brian Mastrosimone, who owns the New York businesses, claims the phrase “Finger Lakin’ Good” is simply a representation of his geographical location. He told WXXI News: “I didn’t mention anything about fast food restaurants or chicken or the colonel or anything like that, I represent a region and I’m doing so much within the region.”
KFC says it wishes Mastrosimone and his businesses well, “but we must defend our trademarks against anything that might weaken them or confuse our guests.” KFC’s opposition states that that company has spent “hundreds of millions of dollars advertising and promoting the sale of products and services using the Finger Lickin’ Good marks” which are widely recognized by the general public. It goes on to claim that consumers will likely believe that products offered under Mastrosimone’s Finger Lakin’ Good marks “are authorized, endorsed, sponsored or licensed by KFC.”
Mastrosimone told WHEC: “They told us we had to drop the name or else basically and I'm assuming the ‘or else’ is they're going to take me to court, but I'm not going to chicken out on this one.”