A MUM and successful entrepreneur has accused Aldi of copying a screen she invented to protect children from sunburn.
Cara Sayer created the SnoozeShade which attaches to prams to give youngsters protection from the sun.
The 47-year-old from Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, was furious when she realised Aldi are selling a very similar device for half the price.
Cara, who came up with the SnoozeShade nine years ago following the birth nine years ago of her daughter, Holly, took to social media to take Aldi to task.
Her “spot the difference” competition shows the Aldi sun shade which fits snugly over a pram and also sports green trim.
Aldi’s new sun shade goes on sale from Thursday at £9.99 – which is £10 cheaper than the trademarked SnoozeShade product now popular around the world.
Cara posted: “So @AldiUK has copied my product. Even down to using my words!
“I’m devastated as a loyal Aldi customer that this has been done. My product is a world first. It’s unique. You cannot make the same quality as mine for £10! This is a photo of both. Let’s play spot the difference.”
The description of the product online from Aldi tells how the sun shade can protect the child from sun, wind, chill and rain.
These four elements are mentioned to describe the SnoozeShade brand’s many items – wording Cara says she worked hard to come up with during invention.
Speaking today, Cara said: “A customer messaged me with a picture of the Aldi product and I was shocked.
“They’ve minimally changed it but they have used my icons and my words on the packaging. I’m going to speak to lawyers and find out my legal rights before contacting Aldi.
“I don’t know yet whether I can get them to admit they are wrong or take it off sale. I’m only a one-woman band.”
Cara revealed she has pre-ordered the Aldi sun shade so she can investigate for herself how similar the products are.
The entrepreneur has concerns over the safety of their product however.
She said: “I have invested tens of thousands of pounds getting my products safety tested and making sure a newborn can use it. I even had a material made just for me. I very much doubt Aldi have taken the same steps.
“My other concern is I don’t want people thinking this is my product. I’m very proud of what I have achieved and this is upsetting. Other products like mine have been an ‘ode to’ rather than a blatant copy.”
SnoozeShade was launched by Cara in March 2010 after finding it “ridiculous” that mums needed blankets or cardigans to cover prams when required.
This is not the first time Aldi have been challenged over their lookalike products.
Last year, family businesses such as The Collective and Heck claimed the German retailer were ripping off their gourmet yoghurt and chicken sausage products respectively.
An Aldi spokeswoman said: ““Like many other similar products on the market our Mamia Stroller Sun Shade helps keep little ones safe and comfortable out of the sun.”