All food entrepreneurs know about the importance of branding. Branding, according to the business dictionary is “the process involved in creating a unique name and image for a product or service in the consumers’ mind, mainly through advertising campaigns with a consistent theme. Branding aims to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers”.
The uniqueness of the restaurant is created through branding.
Many food entrepreneurs develop concepts creating harmonious food, ambiance, and visual branding but many skip on the process of registering their brands and work with unprotected intellectual property (IP).
We especially see these problems in businesses that are not corporate.
It is important to note that small to medium businesses and food entrepreneurs greatly benefit from the different forms of intellectual property protection and can avoid costly problems down the road in the form of stolen logos, names, visuals or even recipes, vendor lists, or other proprietary information.
This is the list of main intellectual property ingredients to consider:
Registering your brand should be included in the early stages of developing a restaurant or food concept. A good lawyer can access the United States Patents and Trademark Offices- USPTO- filings database to see if the name is not already taken and estimate the possibility for a successful filing, providing options in case a name already is taken.
A good attorney can assess all the intellectual property that can be registered as trademark or copyright including logos, slogans, jingles, menus, visuals, etc.
He or she can provide a priority list for you and the order it should be taken care of.
Trade Secrets – Non-Disclosure Agreements and Other Contracts
A business lawyer can work with you creating documents such non-disclosure agreements to be signed by your employees and associates. These documents are prepared with the goal of protecting your recipes and lists of vendors, among other proprietary information, which can be considered trade secrets.
Now, if you already developed a food concept that is up and running, It is never too late to protect some of the most precious assets your business has!
Marcos E. Garciaacosta is a business and intellectual property attorney specialized in trademarks, contracts, copyrights, and licensing. You can schedule a consultation calling (480) 324-6378. We offer a flat fee for our clients and flexible payment schedules. Our office is located at 659 E. Main Street, Mesa, Arizona 85203 or we can visit you at your restaurant or/and offices.