Little Leaf Farms files to trademark lettuce “shape”

Little Leaf Farms files to trademark lettuce’s shape

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Little Leaf Farms files to trademark lettuce’s shape

Massachusetts-based lettuce grower Little Leaf Farms has officially filed a motion with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The company is hoping to trademark the distinctive curvy shape of its Baby Crispy Green Leaf lettuce, Fast Company reports.

The publication reports that the unique shape of the product comes from a specific type of seed that has “the inherent ability to grow into a curly lettuce, which is then nurtured with a particular recipe of natural light, moisture, nutrients, and custom-built greenhouses”.

“It’s really something that’s unique to our lettuce and not something else that we’ve seen replicated in the market,” Lindsay Hardie, the Vice President of Marketing, was quoted as saying.

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While other produce companies have also applied and successfully obtained patents for their products, Little Leaf Farms’s request certainly comes out of the ordinary, as usually names and special flavors tend to be trademarked.

However, other food related items such as Hershey’s Kisses, Bugles, and Tootsie Pops all have a trademark for their respectively distinct shapes.

Although the company’s legal team feels confident that they will obtain the trademark, the mark can’t be too generic and must not  be functional or essential to the use or purpose of the product.

“In the case of the Hershey Kiss, distinctiveness was obviously found. Compare this to trying to trademark the shape of a banana. Obviously, it would be much more difficult,” Tanner Murphy, a litigation team member at Caldwell, was quoted as saying.

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