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Food and drink

As the food and drink sector evolves, new opportunities and challenges continue to emerge. Our specialists combine in-depth sector knowledge with a keen understanding of your commercial concerns. Drawing on expertise across our firm, we can help you protect your business and brand, guide you through regulatory complexities, advise you on sector-specific trading obligations and assist you in raising finance.

Key Contacts

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Jane Oakland

Jane Oakland

Partner

Graeme Fearon

Graeme Fearon

Partner

Bespoke, cost-effective advice

From advice on regulatory changes and attracting investment to allow you to grow, to helping you navigate supply chain dynamics and volatile commodity prices, we can guide you through the numerous challenges facing the UK’s food and drink sector. Covering a wide range of commercial issues, we offer specialist support to help you address legal matters and position your business competitively. Whether you need legal advice on protection of your brands, distribution to retailers, dealing with potential investors or regulatory compliance, our experienced team can advise you. We invest time in understanding your business and objectives to deliver bespoke, cost-effective guidance. We can also draw on our extensive external network to ensure you have comprehensive support to meet all the needs of your business.

Highlights

Our Food and Drink Team has been involved in a number of high-profile cases in this area including acting for producers, wholesalers, suppliers, restaurants, farmers, restaurants and retailers. Highlights include:

  • acting for numerous fruit and vegetable producer organisations in relation to trading terms and the interpretation and implementation of rules relating to POs (High Court and European Court of Justice)
  • instructed by a major cheese producer in respect of a haulage/freight dispute
  • the acquisition and disposal of food and drink businesses (including property elements) including  gastro-pubs, hotels and a large pub retailer and brewer
  • drafting competition terms for a ‘foodie’ competition

  • advising and assisting on registered trade mark and design rights protection for local, national and international food brands, and advice on challenging and selling domain names
  • e-commerce and website terms and conditions for the retail of luxury food and wine items
  • debt recovery work for a salad and vegetable grower/packer

Expertise

Our expertise in this area encompasses:

  • business and company sales and acquisitions and restructuring
  • company incorporations, secretarial work and reorganisations
  • competition law and the restraint on trade
  • investment structures for your business
  • joint ventures, partnerships and relationships with third parties including shareholder agreements
  • licensing, regulatory and health and safety queries
  • marketing, distribution and supply agreements

  • terms and conditions and other commercial arrangements for your business
  • branding (protection and exploitation) including intellectual property (trade marks, design rights, patents and copyrights) and food labelling
  • resolving Trading Standards prosecutions and disputes including product withdrawals/recalls
  • imports and exports
  • debt recovery
  • commercial property acquisitions and sales
  • employment issues including zero-hour contracts, casual worker contracts and termination provisions
  • Agriculture
  • Agriculture and Food Industry Disputes

Thrings LLP is praised for ‘real attention to detail’, ‘good commercial antennae’ and ‘sound judgement’.

The Legal 500

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