Got Kale? (Chick-fil-A v. Muller-Moore)

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:

Chick-fil-A CARES

P.O. Box 500367

Atlanta, GA 31150

And Eat More Kale!

Advertisements

One thought on “Got Kale? (Chick-fil-A v. Muller-Moore)

  1. Aaah… an intellectual property debate! How interesting that someone (Chick-fil-A) is claiming intellectual property rights on a slogan that is downright anti-intellectual!

    I don’t agree that Chick-fil-A has all the rights to the phrase, however you want to spell it, “eat more chicken.” I love Chick-fil-A’s products (except for their sweet tea – I’m still too much of a northerner to like sweet tea), and prefer their chicken over any other fast food chicken. But, if they have a right to the phrase, then should your doctor be wary of giving you dietary advice if you have a cholesterol problem?

    “Doctor, in view of my cholesterol problem, should I eat steak?”
    “No, please eat more, uh, well, fowl.”
    “What?”
    “I can’t tell you to eat more, uh, chicken or Chick-fil-A will sue me. Frankly, I can’t tell you to eat more of anything or they will sue me.”

    I’m not as much of an expert as Stephen Kinsella, so here’s a good link: Stephen Kinsella at Mises.Org

    PS – hope the link comes through properly

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s