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CJ’s ‘Ha Sun Jung’ wins in kimchi patent war

Posted November. 02, 2013 06:03,   

Updated January. 01, 1970 09:00

한국어

In a legal battle over patent rights in kimchi-making between market leader Daesang FNF’s “Chongga Kimchi” and runner-up CJ Cheiljedang’s “Ha Sun Jung kimchi,” the latter secured win.

The Seoul Central District Court said on Friday, “Since kimchi-making technology of Daesang FNF’s Chongga Kimchi is a method that ordinary engineers can easily develop, it cannot be recognized for innovativeness and novelty,” in issuing a ruling in favor of the defendant.

In October last year, Daesang FNF filed a lawsuit with the Seoul Central District Court, saying that its kimchi-making patents were infringed upon. “We developed and have been using so-called ‘Alpha starching’ technology that boosts color and gloss by putting starch into kimchi seasonings without boiling the starch, and using this technology, we have saved 790 million won (745,000 U.S. dollars) in cumulative production costs until recently.”

When consumers make kimchi at home, they make sticky rice starch by putting sticky rice powder into water and boiling it, before inserting it into salted cabbages, and the technology developed by Chongga Kimchi is a method designed to produce sticky rice starch without boiling sticky rice.

Daesang FNF had claimed that CJ Cheiljedang is making kimchi by infringing upon two of its patents including Alpha starch production method and technique to make kimchi seasonings, and sought 2 billion won (1.9 million dollars) in damage, which was denied at the Friday ruling.