The company claims its Raflex MDO (machine direction oriented) infringes European Patent Number 2 049 333 B1, which is Avery Dennison’s patent on its Global MDO pressure-sensitive film.
Protected under patents in Europe & China
Global MDO film, launched in September 2011, is the latest development of the company’s MDO product family which has been marketed globally since 1995. It is protected under patents in Europe and China, and has patent applications pending in the US and Brazil.
Judy Abelman, VP communications, Avery Dennison Materials Group, told FoodProductionDaily, it discovered the infringement after conducting a chemical analysis of Raflex MDO.
“Global MDO is a more sustainable, semi-squeezable self-adhesive construction designed to improve conformable labelling across all application types, from food through to home and personal care and general purpose segments,” she said.
“When combined with Avery Dennison’s ClearCut S7000 adhesive technology, and a thin recyclable PET liner, it gives users a flexible facestock and a lower total applied cost across the value chain.
“Results are a label that is close to 50% thinner than the current standard products used for these applications (PE85) while retaining all of the performance properties required for these applications.
“Twice as many labels on nearly the same size of roll give up to 16% savings on transport costs, fewer reel changes, and increased warehouse space. 43% less solid waste and 25% less energy use during manufacture (vs. PE85) mean big sustainability gains throughout the value chain.”
Regional Court of Munich I
Abelman said the complaint was filed in Germany, on January 26, with the Regional Court of Munich I after failed attempts to negotiate a license agreement with UPM Raflatac, allowing their continued supply of the product.
“We actively protect our intellectual property in a number of ways. We have been fortunate in that we have not had to resort to patent litigation in our labels business for quite some time,” she added.
“Unfortunately, our efforts to positively resolve this matter were unsuccessful.”
She said the duration of the decision-making is up to the court adding: ‘Avery Dennison respects the intellectual property rights of other companies and individuals and expects others to do the same.’
The patent applications in the US and Brazil are undergoing examination now. Abelman said it's up to the patent offices in those countries to finalize the examination.
Avery Dennison’s Global MDO conforms with a range of packaging shapes, while maintaining printing and decoration capabilities for converters and brand owners.
According to Abelman, the company has invested significant resources in the research, development, and production of its MDO film portfolio.