Lawyers for candymaker Mars Inc. shot off an urgent letter to a Scottish bar attempting to secure Protected Food status for its deep-fried rendition of the company's namesake candy bar, saying the decision to deep fry Mars renders the candy's health benefits null and void.

According to The Scotsman, Deep-fried Mars bars are now "as synonymous with Scottish food as haggis across the globe" thanks to the Carron Fish Bar in Stonehaven. But an effort — since abandoned — by the bar's owners to gain Protected Food status from the European Union did not sit well with the confection's manufacturer.

All the hard work that went into reducing the bar's saturated fat levels would be for naught, the company said in its letter. They go on to ask that a disclaimer be added to the menu noting the product is not "authorized or endorsed" by Mars Inc.

"We are really flattered that customers of Carron Fish Bar like our product so much that it has now become a flagship product for the store," a Mars spokesman told BBC Scotland. "No application for a protected geographical indication has been filed to date. Should an application be filed, unfortunately, we wouldn't be able to support it as deep-frying one of our products would go against our commitment to promoting healthy, active lifestyles."

Co-owner Lorraine Watson was mostly baffled by the whole thing.

"I was amazed when I got the lawyer's letter because I really feel they are giving me a slap on the wrist when I haven't tried to offend them," she told The Scotsman. "I didn't know they had reduced the saturated fat content. But, of course, the deep-fried Mars bar isn't healthy. We have never said it was."

[photo via AP]