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HE Licenties B.V. v. Orchid Gardens et al, District Court The Hague, The Netherlands, 27 July 2022, Case no. ECLI:NL:RBDHA:2022:7627

HE Licences is involved in the management of patent rights in the ornamental plants industry. Orchid Gardens cultivates plants, including colored orchids. HE Licences invoked its patent rights against customers of Orchid Gardens. HE Licences sent summons letters to these buyers alleging that the buyers were infringing the patents by buying orchids from Orchid Gardens. It also made a precautionary attachment for recourse against third parties. HE Licences is requesting that the Court prohibits Orchid Gardens from infringing on its patents.

The Judge rules that the method claim is not infringed. An earlier Netherlands Patent Office opinion on validity considers the product claim to be a prior art staining with a dye customary in that prior art. Thus there is a serious, non negligable chance that the patent will be invalidated in the future. An order prohibiting indiscriminate claims alleging infringement (‘wapperverbod’) is issued.

A copy of the decision can be read here.