Lithuanian surimi giant Viciunai lost a court battle to protect its Russian brand name Sovetskij.

During the long-running dispute, Viciunai failed to prove the difference between the words Sovetskie, meaning "Soviet" or "made in Russia," and Sovetskij in the Russian Supreme Court.

The decision opens the way for other Russian fish processing companies to use the Sovetskij branding.

The brand was created specifically for Eastern European markets a long time ago, a Viciunai spokesperson told IntraFish.

However, this brand was never used in Lithuania or Western Europe.