WALLINGFORD — Edible Arrangements International LLC, headquartered on Barnes Road in Wallingford, has reached a settlement with a small New Hampshire-based food consulting company that shares part its name.
The global fruit basket company filed a federal lawsuit earlier this year against Edible Commerce for trademark infringement, unfair competition and unfair and deceptive trade practices. Edible Arrangements sought damages and a declaration that Edible Commerce is not allowed to register its name or trademark.
Edible Arrangements announced Friday that a settlement had been reached in the trademark dispute. As part of the settlement signed on April 20, Edible Commerce will rebrand to a new company name.
“Edible Arrangements aggressive growth plan demands that we protect our brand on behalf of our franchisees,” Rob Price, president of Edible Arrangements, said in a statement Friday. “We will remain vigilant to preserve our hard-earned intellectual property. We are glad to have secured a constructive resolution to this dispute.”
Details of the full settlement are confidential, according to both companies.
Edible Commerce is a food business consulting and marketing agency based in Concord, New Hampshire that specializes in advising the owners of home-based food businesses, food entrepreneurs, food startups, food artisans and small farmers. The company lists five employees on its website, including founder Noah Munro.
Munro said Friday that he was happy the dispute has been resolved.
“Everything is fully resolved,” he said. “It was a mutually agreeable resolution.”
Edible Arrangements has a trademark on the word “edible,” Munro said. “So they are basically investing a lot in protecting the association of that word with their company.”
Munro said he will changing the name of his company in the near future, per the settlement, and asked customers to keep an eye out for the new name on social media and the company’s website. In the meantime, the company “is going to continue to grow and serve its clients,” he said.
Munro noted that Price was “nothing but respectful throughout the process.”
“I appreciated that,” he said.
Edible Arrangements has tangled multiple times with competitors over trademark and trade practices, according to federal court records.
In 2014, it bought a 30-year-old Pennsylvania company and a competitor, Incredibly Edible Delites, and FruitFlowers after years of legal action over trademark infringement and unfair trade practices.
Edible Arrangements also settled a claim against 1-800-Flowers in federal court last year. 1-800-Flowers filed a counterclaim stating Edible Arrangements was building a monopoly by filing expensive and time-consuming lawsuits against its competitors.
Edible Arrangements has more than 1,300 franchise locations worldwide. The company was founded in 1999 in East Haven, but is now headquartered in Wallingford.