Scotts Miracle-Gro sues cannabis marketing firm called MiracleGro
MiracleGro Marketing is one of the (many) new marketing firms springing up around the cannabis industry, but they probably should have been a bit more choosy about their name. While the name does promise marketing miracles for growers, it also sounds just like Scotts Miracle-Gro, which is a long-running plant food brand. And while it might seem unlikely that anyone would conflate the two of them, Scotts’ lawyers wouldn’t agree. The plant food company filed suit last week in North Carolina, claiming the marketing company has infringed on their trademarks.
There is a hyphen’s difference between them, and the marketing firm isn’t using any logos or imagery from Scotts. The only real connection is that Scotts makes stuff you put on cannabis plants, and the marketing firm helps you make green once that plant is grown and ready to sell. The marketing firm does use a marijuana leaf in its image, and Scotts says that’s too close to the three-leafed plant in its logo. Scotts is going hard after this one, too — it’s alleging “false designation of origin, unfair competition, and trademark dilution,” and asking for triple damages and injunctive relief. Harsh!
Still, odds are probably pretty good for a settlement here — as flashy as their website is, the marketing firm seems like it’s just getting started in cannabis (though they do claim a lot of digital marketing experience), and so the final outcome will probably just have to be a name and logo change, and of course a promise to never go near the trademark again.