Nestlé loses legal battle to acquire trademark for ‘The Vegan Butcher’

Read Time:   |  19th February 2021

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Nestlé has lost a legal battle against The Herbivorous Butcher in an attempt to acquire a trademark for the term 'The Vegan Butcher'.


Swiss giant Nestlé has failed to trademark the term ‘The Vegan Butcher’ after acquiring mock meat brand, Sweet Earth Food.

In 2017, Minnesota-based The Herbivorous Butcher applied for the same trademark, but was denied on the grounds that the term is ‘merely descriptive’.

Therefore, when Nestlé attempted to go after the trademark, The Herbivorous Butcher filed an opposition with the United States Patent and Trademark Office to prohibit the conglomerate from acquiring it.

The Herbivorous Butcher considers this a ‘huge victory’, stating on Facebook: “The phrase ‘vegan butcher’ shouldn’t belong to any single company.”

They continued, “This is also a huge victory for small businesses like ours. Thank you for continuing to support us, especially through the past year which has been filled with uncertainty.”

The Herbivorous Butcher

Despite forcing Nestlé to drop their pursuit of the trademark, The Herbivorous Butcher does not plan to pursue the trademark further.

Speaking to VegNews, Aubry Walch of The Herbivorous Butcher explained:

“I hope they realized, as did we, that the term ‘vegan butcher’ belongs to all the plant-based meat mongers that are working towards better food and a better tomorrow for animals and humans alike.

“It’s a movement and shouldn’t belong to a corporation or any one business.”

A lack of monopoly over a term such as ‘The Vegan Butcher’ means that both small and large companies can continue to innovate plant-based products without the threat of legal recourse. This of course is positive for the vegan sector and will hopefully encourage more plant-based alternatives to emerge in the future.

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