A family-run Melbourne chocolate company has been forced to rename dozens of products after it lost a long-running battle with Nestle.

Leanne and Ian Neeland, from Yarra Glen, who run the Yarra Valley Chocolaterie, received a letter saying they ‘cease all use’ of the term ‘freckle’ in their products.

The company was selling more than 20 products with the name in their three stores including the “giant freckle”, “mini freckles” and “freckled egg”.

The owners told the Herald Sun “It’s a blow. We’ve been dealing with the impact on tourism first from the bushfires and now the coronavirus, so it’s a constant battle for small business owners.;’

She said the company is now expecting to have to cease using $5000 worth of labels.

All freckle based products will now be labelled as ‘polka dots’.

A Nestle spokeswoman said in a statement to news.com.au that the company was willing to work with Yarra Valley Chocolaterie to help minimise their losses.


“It’s important for companies to protect their trademarks by preventing unauthorised use, as if they don’t, they can lose the right to their brand names forever,” the statement said.

“This is why when we became aware that Yarra Valley Chocolaterie was using our trademark, we asked them to stop using it.”