A three-dimensional logo shaped as a bottle with a lemon slice in its neck is insufficiently distinctive to be used as a trademark for drinks products, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) has ruled.

The court rejected a bid by Belgian drinks company Eurocermex to secure European Union (EU) rights to the mark to sell "beers, aerated waters, fruit juices" and promote its "restaurants, bars, snack bars".

The court backed the EU regulator the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) - OHIM - in rejecting the idea, and Eurocermex's claim that its mark was actually unusual. The company said placing lemon in a bottle was generally limited to Mexican beers, for instance.

The court was unmoved, however, awarding legal costs against the company.