Perhaps if Bo Muller-Moore, of Montpelier, Vermont, had used the phrase “Got Kale?” instead of “Eat More Kale” on his silk-screened t-shirts to promote local produce, he wouldn’t be facing the legal battle he currently is. That’s because the California Milk Processor Board has, for the most part, ignored alternative uses of its “Got Milk?” campaign, begun in 1993. Unfortunately for Mr. Muller-Moore, Chick-fil-A is much more protective of its “eat mor chikin” slogan:
In a letter, a lawyer for Chick-fil-A said Muller-Moore’s effort to expand the use of his “eat more kale” message “is likely to cause confusion of the public and dilutes the distinctiveness of Chick-fil-A’s intellectual property and diminishes its value.”
Now I’m no expert, and I’m all for Chick-fil-A protecting its intellectual property, but I don’t think anyone would ever mistake any product on Chick-fil-A’s menu for kale. Ever. If they did, then Chick-fil-A has bigger problems than Mr. Muller-Moore’s home-based t-shirt business.
In order to defend his use of the “Eat More Kale” phrase, Mr. Muller-Moore has enlisted the aid of local attorney Daniel Richardson:
“Bo’s is a very different statement. It’s more of a philosophical statement about local agriculture and community-supported farmers markets,” Richardson said. “At the end of the day, I don’t think anyone will step forward and say they bought an ‘eat more kale’ shirt thinking it was a Chick-fil-A product.”
While the chikin v. kale battle rages on, let your voice be heard by contacting Chick-fil-A either by web, phone (1-866-CFA-2040) or, if you must, snail mail:
P.O. Box 500367
Atlanta, GA 31150
And Eat More Kale!