Lane Powell PC - Food, Beverage and Hospitality Law Blog

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Seattle, WA 98111-1302, United States

Contact: Paul Swanson

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Breaking Up is Hard to Do: The California Strawberry Commission’s Claim to University Plant Breeding Research

Plant patents are often overshadowed by their more well-known utility and design patent counterparts under U.S. law. Yet, with the increasing branding and differentiation of agricultural commodities, plant patent rights drive…more
| Agriculture, Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Education, Intellectual Property

Not-So-Sweet Smell of Success: When Does Ambient Scent Marketing Become a Deceptive Trade Practice?

Scent marketing is as old as a realtor baking cookies in a house up for sale and as new as Oscar Mayer’s “bacon” alarm clock. Harnessing the primal power of smell represents a final frontier of subliminal advertising…more
| Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Communications & Media Law, Consumer Protection

Strawberry Patent Rights, Forever

Ripe strawberries define lusciousness. Fragile, with fleeting taste, these heart-shaped berries inspired Shakespeare’s pen: “The strawberry grows underneath the nettle; and wholesome berries thrive and ripen best; neighbour’d…more
| Agriculture, Intellectual Property

Will the Recent Scientific Attack on Vitamin Use Spawn a New Wave of False Advertising Litigation?

For centuries, we’ve ingested magic elixirs in pill and syrupy forms to cure whatever ails us and to ward off future illness. Hard scientific evidence of efficacy may have been lacking for these nostrums, but lingering doubts…more
| Administrative Law, Communications & Media Law, Health, Science, Computers, & Technology

“Faux” Foods and False Advertising Claims: A New Recipe for Whipping Up Lawsuits

With an era of 3D printable food dawning, the Star Trek “food replicator” is beginning to look more like modern reality instead of the stuff of science fiction. Every day and in every way, food scientists and flavor…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Why Does Food Mislabeling Outrage Consumers?

“There’s a Chinese restaurant on every block, and if you think mouths won’t water when you come strolling by, then you don’t know squat about Oriental cuisine. They prize the taste of dog, friend. The chefs round up strays and…more
| Commercial Law & Contracts, Communications & Media Law, Consumer Protection

Antitrust Monopolization Considerations in Licensing Cutting-Edge Food Technology Patents

The term pioneer patent is often misapplied with hyperbole and exaggeration. When it comes to the shrimp peeling machine invented by Fernand and James Lapeyre, however, that blockbuster label is spot-on. Their automated way…more
| Administrative Law, Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Commercial Law & Contracts, Intellectual Property, Science, Computers, & Technology

So, Are Organic Foods Really Safer and Healthier For Us After All?

Some of America’s best organic and sustainable food research is being conducted by the faculty, students and staff of Washington State University’s Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources. As Washington’s…more
| Agriculture, Commercial Law & Contracts, Education

“Hey Barkeep, Pour Me A Pint of…”: Trademark Tips for Microbreweries

For microbrewers, taste and memorable names mean everything. Loyal customers often ask for specific brews and word-of-mouth advertising is indispensable, since microbrews are often purchased in local restaurants and bars. …more
| Commercial Law & Contracts, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

The Growing Allure of Plant Patenting for Brand Differentiation

Plant patents occupy a seldom studied corner of potential patent protection. But plant patenting is taking on new importance as growers and producers of fruits and vegetables—once branded only as commodities—take advantage of…more
| Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Patenting Enhanced Taste and Food Processing: Some Engaging Current Developments

Patenting food processing and flavor-enhancing techniques is a cutting-edge legal endeavor. This article reviews some fascinating new developments in food processing technology and patent litigation…more
| Administrative Law, Health, Intellectual Property, Science, Computers, & Technology

Fruit Juice Misbranding Claims Lose Their Lanham Act Bite

Food label lawsuits are often exercises in byzantine legal logic. This is so because of the peculiar interplay between preemptive federal food labeling laws and regulations on the one hand and federal and state unfair…more
| Administrative Law, Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law

The FDA Rejects Renaming of HFCS as “Corn Syrup”

In 1969, the Archies combined granulated and aqueous forms of fructose and glucose in a bubblegum song called “Sugar, Sugar.” It topped out at No. 1 in the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 charts. The lyrics “Sugar / Oh, Honey, Honey /…more
| Administrative Law, Commercial Law & Contracts, Communications & Media Law
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