Whole Foods Drops Suit Against Vitamin Shoppe

     AUSTIN (CN) – Whole Foods Market has dropped its trademark suit against The Vitamin Shoppe over an uncannily similar marketing campaign.
     U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks approved Whole Foods’ notice of dismissal with prejudice on Friday. The notice stated the parties “have entered into a settlement agreement resolving all claims advanced in this case.”
     Terms of the settlement were not disclosed.
     Austin-based Whole Foods filed suit in July, claiming it launched its Health Starts Here campaign in 2009.
     “Well after Whole Foods Market began using its Health Starts Here mark, defendant launched a virtually identical mark Core Health Starts Here to promote its retail stores and the sale of nutritional products,” the complaint stated.
     “Defendant’s Core Health Starts Here campaign promotes health and nutrition, and also seeks to promote public awareness of the need for nutritional lifestyles.”
     Whole Foods claimed The Vitamin Shoppe refused to comply with its demand to stop using Health Starts Here or any other confusingly similar name.
     “Defendant’s unauthorized use of the mark Core Health Starts Here removes from Whole Foods Market the ability to control the nature and quality of products and services provided under the Health Starts Here mark, and places the valuable reputation and goodwill of Whole Foods Market in the hands of defendant, over whom Whole Foods Market has no control,” the complaint stated.
     Founded in 1977, The Vitamin Shoppe operates over 500 retail locations in 42 states, according to its web site.

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