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Utah’s ‘dirty soda’ war ends in a settlement

Posted at 10:28 AM, Nov 08, 2017

SALT LAKE CITY — A truce has been declared in Utah’s “dirty soda” war.

In court filings obtained by FOX 13 on Wednesday, rival flavored soda shops Swig and Sodalicious announced a settlement in a long-running lawsuit over who can use the term “dirty” to describe their drinks.

An employee at Swig mixes a “dirty soda” for a customer. (FOX 13 file image)

The terms of the settlement were not immediately available, nor was it clear which business would be allowed to continue to use the term “dirty soda.” The filing asked a federal judge to dismiss the lawsuit with prejudice, meaning it cannot be refiled.

“Pursuant to this stipulation, the parties move this Court for entry of a dismissal with prejudice of all claims, counterclaims, and causes of action in this Action with each party to bear its own costs, expenses, and attorney’s fees., except as agreed by the parties,” the filing states.

Swig sued Sodalicious in 2015, accusing it of violating its trademark on the term “dirty soda” to describe flavoring in sodas. Sodalicious counter-sued, arguing the term is generic and there are a number of other shops in Utah who also use it.

In August, the two sides went to court. Sodalicious asked for the case to be dismissed, but the judge refused.

The flavored soda craze has swept Utah with a number of shops popping up and offering their own combos of colas, purees and syrups. At times, lines outside shops stretch around block faces.

Perhaps as a result of the litigation, a number of other flavored soda shops have refrained from using the term “dirty” to describe their drinks. When FOX 13 visited several shops in August, many used “filthy” and “nasty” to describe the flavored beverages.

Updates on FOX 13 and as details become available.