An Ohio federal judge dismissed J.M. Smucker Co.’s (JIF peanut butter producer) request for a declaratory ruling that it would not be infringing on the similarly colored labeling used by Hormel Foods (Skippy peanut butter producer). Smucker announced its intent to use a light blue color , similar to the blue on Skippy labels, for its JIF No Added Sugar product. Hormel responded that this would be an infringement. The Judge found that Hormel’s cease and desist letters sent to Smucker to enforce its trade dress rights are protected and the court cannot conclude as a matter of law that this infringement claim is baseless.
Last month, Grégory Doucet, the Green party mayor of Lyon, France announced meat will be cut from school lunches until the Covid-19 health crisis has come to an end. Doucet claimed the decision was not ideological and instead is “purely pragmatic,” to accommodate a faster, socially distanced lunch by offering one menu rather than a meat and meat free option. Backlash has come from government officials, including the interior minister and agriculture minister, and interested, meat-eating civilians. The minister of agriculture has asked the prefect in Lyon to look into the legality of dropping meat and a group of parents, agricultural unions, and local conservative politicians recently attempted to overturn the mayor’s decision in court, but the judge rejected the challenge.