Brewery caught in social media crossfire over ‘Cascadia’ mark, cease-and-desist letters

Steamworks Bottled Beer Launch Party

Credit: Steamworks

The blog, Barley Mowat, reported late last week that British Columbia-based Steamworks (not to be confused with the one in Durango, Colorado) was finally taking action on a long-held trademark for the term, “Cascadia.”

Yup, Eli (Gershkovitch, Steamworks Owner) is using his trademark for the term Cascadia (Registration Number TMA669027), as applied to beer and beer-related wares, to send out a volley of calls warning of Cease & Desists to breweries that dared call their Cascadian Dark Ale a “Cascadian Dark Ale.”

The lengthy report doesn’t identify any breweries that were sent cease-and-desist letters though Steamworks identified one target in a formal response (pdf) this weekend.

So having said all this, we have been evolving our position on this issue in the last few months and have decided that protecting our trademark vs. Molson owned Granville Island Brewing is the best course of action so as to preserve the integrity of the name “Cascadia” for true craft breweries not for large multinational breweries to homogenize or lay claim to the name. Our plan is to license the trademark to other true B.C. craft breweries for a very nominal fee ($1 perhaps) which is legally needed to protect the trademark for all. These discussions are on-going and not 100% finalized but so far have been well received.

Stay tuned.

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