I`m wondering if anyone can offer advice on protecting recipes and items that we have designed and use for our company show setups.
We have a line of gourmet foods, dry mixes that customers purchase and make at home.
I always figured it probably wasn`t worth it to try to protect anything as I`ve been told that even if you have a patent, or copywrite or trademark as long as a competitor changes their product by 10 or 15 percent, not sure exactly what it is, they can basically copy and sell your product.
Also, for instance, we have a Spinach dip. Do you know how many Spinach dips there are available, probably a bazillion. So why worry about this right? Of course from this weeks headlines, after being in business for I don`t know how many years, but a lot, seems that KFC is making moves to secure their secret recipe. . .so
Here is my problem. . .I`ll try to explain this.
Our product has become very popular in the areas that we market. At the last few shows we have participated in, the competition is buying our product up. Are they going to try to copy us? Don`t know. . .We had one tell us outright that they were.
We also have some chillers that we have come up with. We have a name for them and are asked all the time if we sell them. We use them only for our displays. Long story on the selling of them, they work great for us, just not so great for personal home use. In any case, this competitor also looked our design over pretty well and asked if we cared if they use our idea. HELLO! Yes we care, this is our idea, all of our sellers use these holders and all of our booths at shows are easily identified by our unique setups.
How would one go about protecting a recipe or food product and our chillers. What do I do if at the next show we are participating in, they are there with our product and our setup? Any ideas?