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Eat More Kale vs Chick fil-A

Eat More Kale vs Chick fil-A

In August, Bo Muller-Moore applied for a federal trademark for the phrase “Eat More Kale”. Moore has been using this phrase on t-shirts and eventually on his website, eatmorekale.com, since 2000. In September, Chick fil-A filed to block Muller-Moore’s trademark application, claiming that  it conflicts with its slogan and website eatmorchikin.com.

This is not the first time that Muller-Moore has had a run-in with Chick fil-A. According to Seven Days, six years after Muller-Moore started selling his “Eat More Kale” t-shirts, he received a cease and desist letter from Chick fil-A. Muller-Moore responded by saying that he planned to continue using the phrase. He never heard back from Chick fil-A until they filed to block his trademark application this September.

Seven Days points out the significant difference in scale between the two organizations. Chick fil-A made $3.58 billion from its 1,560+ locations in 2010, while Muller-Moore still doesn’t make enough money off of his “Eat More Kale” logo to support himself.

This seems eerily similar to the time that the National Pork Board sent a cease and desist order to Jennifer Laycock, the blogger known as “The Lactivist,” for selling t-shirts that that referred to breastmilk as “the other white milk.” In its letter, the pork board claimed that the t-shirts Laycock was selling via her Cafepress store, were a violation of the National Pork Board’s trademarked phrase “the other white meat.” In the end, Laycock agreed to stop selling the shirts and switched to shirts that said “Breast: the original white milk” instead.

Does kale really present a business threat to Chick fil-A? Does breastmilk really present a business threat to pork? Or are these lawsuits more about big corporate players asserting their power over the little guy?

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Image created based on photos from quinn.anya and jeffk on flickr.

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115 comments

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9:52AM PDT on Aug 7, 2012

I didn't even know you could eat it until recently. I thought it was just ornamental - like parsley. And you're right, Pam, it tastes awful. Like {{{shudder}}} turnip greens. The only "greens" I can stomach are spinach and collards - and not too well done.

But we already know that CFA CEO Cathy is a class-A jerk, so this isn't surprising. You'd think it would actually be good for his own brand recognition...

9:40AM PDT on Aug 7, 2012

But...kale tastes like bitter weeds! Can anyone help me with a recipe which actually makes it taste GOOD?

6:25PM PDT on Aug 2, 2012

Reminds me of when Paris Hilton wanted to copyright "That's hot".

2:47PM PDT on Jul 23, 2012

Eating more healthy food, does in fact conflict with eating fast food. That is a good thing.

3:01PM PDT on Jul 19, 2012

Kale is healing and nourishing. chick-fil-a is a mouth full cruelty and suffering. chick-fil-a customers, beware the chickens revenge---cancer, high blood pressure, obesity, & so much more!

6:11PM PST on Dec 27, 2011

that is so ridiculous! it's not even the same thing because he actually spells "more" the right way instead of "mor" like in chick-fil-a's ad. also, who's gonna confuse chicken and kale? on top of that, how does chick-fil-a think they can own rights to a phrase anyway? good grief...

9:44PM PST on Dec 3, 2011

How do you confuse a cow holing a sign that says eat mor chikin with a t-shirt that says eat more kale? Chic-fil-A is a multi-billion dollar business. And they're supposed to be Christian, so they should forgive.

Plus it's true... We really DO need to eat more kale or other greens that are healthy, vs. those foods that are deep fried.

8:09PM PST on Nov 29, 2011

I'm especially confused because Kale and "Chickin" are so similar. How will I ever know the difference?

So, the similarity is "Eat More" vs. "Eat Mor". I've been told to eat more of this or that my whole life. I'm pretty sure it would be easy to dig up all kinds of prior art to various "Eat More X" phrases and slogans. What's next? An attack on the Cajun phrase "Eat mo bettah"?

6:13PM PST on Nov 29, 2011

I had never heard of Chick-Fil-A as they are not here in Canada but I'll know to avoid them when I'm in the U.S, thanks

5:53PM PST on Nov 29, 2011

thanks.

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