Experienced And Knowledgeable With Both The Alcohol beverage Industry And The Law

Protecting your company’s trade secrets from employee theft

On Behalf of | Apr 1, 2024 | alcohol beverage law

The alcoholic beverage industry is notoriously competitive, as it operates within a famously crowded marketplace. Trade secrets — from unique brewing methods to proprietary recipes — are invaluable assets that can distinguish your brand in the minds of consumers. As such, protecting these assets from employee theft can make or break your company.

As any leak of a trade secret can lead to loss of competitive advantage and significant financial repercussions, you need to take proactive steps to guard them against theft, even from your own workers. Let’s look at a few of key steps.

Non-disclosure agreements (NDAs)

One of the first lines of defense is the implementation of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). Employees — particularly those involved in the production process or with access to sensitive information — should sign NDAs as part of their onboarding process. These agreements can legally bind them to confidentiality, clearly outlining the repercussions of disclosing proprietary information.

Access control

You’ll also want to limit access to trade secrets to a need-to-know basis. This principle extends beyond physical access to include digital access to recipes, production techniques and supplier information. Consider employing technological solutions such as encrypted databases with individual login credentials, better ensuring that access to sensitive information is traceable and restricted.


Finally, you’ll want to foster a culture of confidentiality and respect for intellectual property within your company. Outline your expectations in your employee handbook and conduct training on the subject to better ensure that everyone is on the same page.

Unlike patents, copyrights and trademarks, trade secrets aren’t safeguarded by government oversight. Instead, you’ll need to seek personalized legal guidance to better ensure that your NDAs and other legal resources can keep these assets safe.

Recent Posts


About the Blog

The foregoing was prepared as general information. It is not meant to provide legal advice granting any specific matter and should not be acted upon without professional counsel. If you have questions or require additional information regarding these or other related matters, please contact Malkin Law, P.A. This material may be considered attorney advertising under certain rules of professional conduct.