UK: Jump Ship Brewing and BrewDog Clash Over 'Shore Leave'

Scottish craft brewing group BrewDog has been sued by Edinburgh-based alcohol-free brewery Jump Ship Brewing over the use of the beer brand name Shore Leave. Jump Ship has utilized the Shore Leave brand for two beer editions in mid-2022 and May 2023, both earning nominations at the Scottish Beer Awards.However, in July, Sonja Mitchell, Founder and CEO of Jump Ship discovered that BrewDog planned to a launch a new product also called 'Shore Leave’.

Both breweries apparently use the same term from the language of sailors, which describes the off-duty time of a sailor that he spends on land, where he can, for example, enjoy a beer.

Despite contacting BrewDog about the issue, the brewery refused to rename the new beer. For this reason Mitchell now decided to take legal action against BrewDog. She expressed her disappointment, emphasizing that she had to protect her investment in the brand and the reputation for ethical, great-tasting beers.

In response to the legal action, a BrewDog spokesperson expressed as well “surprise and disappointment”, citing ownership of the Shore Leave trademark in the UK. The spokesperson mentioned BrewDog's attempts to settle the matter amicably, proposing collaborations and agreeing not to use the phrase 'Jump Ship' in advertising. BrewDog said it regrets the legal action and that the brewery instead prefers “collaborative efforts to support industry growth.”

Jump Ship, established in December 2019 by Sonja Mitchell, produces a range of non-alcoholic beers, including Shore Leave, with global award recognition. A 2022 crowdfunding campaign raised GBP 366,000 (USD 465,000) for a new brewery. Jump Ship supplies 240 UK stockists and donates 10% of profits to charities.

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