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In court, a trademark battle turns personal for two fish sauce makers
In court, a trademark battle turns personal for two fish sauce makers

Bottles upon bottles of fish sauce were slapped with blue evidence stickers and arrayed before the jury. Inside each was a pungent, amber elixir that is to Vietnamese cuisine what olive oil is to Italian cooking, with a smell that has been likened to armpits, regurgitated cat food and liquid death. In the downtown Los Angeles court, the lids remained tightly sealed. The jury would be evaluating only what was on the outside — the logos of two sellers of fish sauce who usually compete on grocery store shelves rather than inside a courtroom. At stake was a slice of a market in which hundreds of millions of gallons are sold to consumers annually worldwide. Last week's...

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