A California-based cannabis company has been forced to rebrand one of its signature strains after receiving a cease-and-desist letter from one of the most well-known restaurants in the country.
The French Laundry, which Anthony Bourdain called “the best restaurant in the world, period,” in 2005, sent a cease-and-desist letter to Maven Genetics over its French Laundry strain. The French Laundry Restaurant Corporation holds a trademark on the restaurant’s name.
“Our strain’s name, meant as a playful tribute to its parent genetics, was never intended to infringe on any trademark,” Maven said in a press release first reported by Forbes. “However, to avoid potential legal entanglements, we have made the difficult decision to retire the French Laundry name from our product lineup.”
The strain, originally cross-bred from LA Rouge and Soap, has been renamed FKAFL — an initialism for “formerly known as French Laundry.”
The controversy was somewhat reminiscent of the dust-up a few years back between the Gorilla Glue Co., an Ohio-based adhesives brand, and GG Stains, the creator of the popular Gorilla Glue #4 strain.
Gorilla Glue filed a lawsuit against GG Strains in an Ohio federal court, alleging trademark infringement and dilution, but the two parties reached a settlement and GG Strains agreed to cease all use of the Gorilla Glue name, opting instead for names like GG4, Original Glue and Purple Glue.
Similar lawsuits or cease-and-desist letters have been filed by the Girl Scouts of America, over the Girl Scout Cookies strain, and the makers of Tapatio, for a THC-infused hot sauce called Trapatio.