The Financial Times reports two rival makers of China’s most popular canned soft drink have taken their “tea wars” to the courts, with one tea maker seeking what local media said would be the largest damages in a Chinese intellectual property case. State-owned Guangzhou Pharmaceutical Holdings is seeking Rmb$2.9bn ($436m) in damages from Hong Kong-based Jiaduobao Group for infringements on its trademark “Wanglaoji” herbal tea drink. The battle, being heard in Guangzhou provincial court, follows a history of disputes in the country’s food and beverage industry between foreign brands and domestic partners. The fight between the tea makers has resulted in an odd arms race where both continued to manufacture and sell the same product under the same name for several years while trying to win market share.
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