TerraCycle and Scotts Announce Settlement Agreement
The Headline: Scott’s Miracle Gro Sues TerraCycle
So here’s the scoop:
Scott’s Miracle Grow…famous (59% of market share, $7 billion in global sales)
TerraCycle…not so famous
TerraCycle is an eco-friendly company that uses worm waste packaged into used plastic bottles as organic plant food. It’s a great idea, and the guy that started this (CEO Tom Szaky) company is only 25 years old. This company should be honored for its service to the environment…honestly!
So here comes the evil Corporate Giant that is making all sorts of bogus claims and has filed a law suit.
“They’re claiming that (the colors) yellow and green are theirs,” Tom added, “Miracle-Gro has sued us over advertising. I’ve never bought an ad.”
Miracle Grow also sued for falsely claiming that its organic products are better than synthetic ones like Miracle-Gro.
This sounds like the same tactics that Monsanto Corporation was using against milk producers putting labels on their milk that said “no artificial hormones”.
Later on TerraCycle, Inc. and The Scotts Company announced they agreed to a settlement of their legal dispute regarding false advertising claims and trade dress infringement. TerraCycle agreed to change certain advertising claims and its package design to avoid possible confusion, and Scotts agreed to dismiss its false advertising and infringement claims. Tom Szaky, the founder and CEO of TerraCycle today said,
“We recognize that Scotts filed this lawsuit based on a legitimate need to uphold the accuracy of advertising claims and protect its trademark rights. We also regret certain statements that were made about Scotts in the heat of litigation. Now that the parties have resolved their differences, TerraCycle is looking forward to providing consumers with an array of garden and lawn care products in the marketplace.”
Jim King, Scotts spokesperson, said,
“Scotts is pleased to resolve this case and believes that the settlement serves the public’s interest in ensuring the accuracy of advertising claims, as well as protection of the valuable Miracle-Gro brand.”
This was the press release forwarded to me by TerraCycle and we were glad to hear the dispute was over. The lawsuit against TerraCycle was rather upsetting due to the bully legal tactics used by a large corporation to intimidate a smaller company that it possibly felt threatened by.
Although we can never know what the desired outcome was from TerraCycle, they too are sure to have the goliath off their back. They agreed to change some claims and product labels, but if their is a positive outcome – TerraCycle did receive some great publicity from the lawsuit.
The Kind of Company Scott’s Miracle Gro Is
Just to give you guys another example of what sort of company Scott’s Miracle Gro is … they had the audacity to sell pesticides and chemical fertilizers to consumers without registering the products with the EPA (US Environmental Protection Agency). This has happened in both Ohio and New York.
Scott’s Miracle Gro used fake registered numbers in its labeling and distributed its products to the residents of Ohio and New York. The Environmental Protection Agency had to step in and implement a national “stop sale, use or removal” order against Scotts and three affiliates for illegal, unregistered and misbranded products.
To Support Terracycle, visit their website: Terracycle.com. By the way you can also help this company collect used 20 ounce soda bottles, while the company donates 5 cents per bottle to a charity of your choice.
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