• The local company said that EABL has resorted to dirty tactics to entrench monopoly in the country’s brewing industry.
• The Naivasha-based brewer promised to challenge any attempt to patent the bottles in court and urged the government to be wary of the arm-twisting antics of EABL.
A vicious fight has erupted between alcohol manufacturers East African Breweries Ltd and Keroche Breweries over bottles used to package drinks.
The trade war started after EABL put up a paid advertisement threatening legal action against anyone using its branded bottles to package other beers.
According to the advert in one of the dailies, EABL claims all bottles and crates engraved with EABL trademark, saying they should be used for EABL products only.
“Notice is hereby given to all persons dealing in EABL engraved bottles or packaging non-EABL alcoholic beverages in an EABL engraved bottle that this action is in contravention of the law and court order,” reads part of the advert.
In a quick rejoinder, Keroche accused the multi-national of using its dominance to stifle competition.
According to Keroche, the Euro bottles do not belong to anyone and should not be patented.
Keroche said EABL’s move to patent a universal bottle is malicious.
The local company said that EABL has resorted to dirty tactics to entrench monopoly in the country’s brewing industry.
The Naivasha-based brewer promised to challenge any attempt to patent the bottles in court and urged the government to be wary of the arm-twisting antics of EABL.
“We are going to court to challenge EABL for engraving the mark EABL on a bottle they do not own. Secondly, we are suing EABL for trying to destroy local business through this restrictive trade practice,” Keroche said in a statement.
The brewer said the brown Euro bottles EABL and Keroche are using existed before two companies were even created.
Keroche has been using the bottles to package and distribute its products mainly Summit Lager, KB Lager and Vienna Ice.
EABL in trying to justify its move published a May 2017 court order restraining anyone from using the marked bottles.
But the local brewer read malice in the timing of the move wondering why their competitor released the order more than two years after it was issued.