Boise Cascade logo lawsuit settled by Massachusetts cannabis firm


Bethan Rose Jenkins, Cannabis News Writer/Editorial

A cannabis company in Massachusetts called New England Treatment Access (NETA) has settled a dispute with North American building materials manufacturer Boise Cascade Company; the disagreement was in regards to their logos being overly similar.

The news broke out in April, when the lawsuit was initially filed. Each company’s logo featured an image of a tree inside a circle. According to the lawsuit, the logos were “confusingly similar” and the green color choice was “nearly identical”.

NETA and Boise Cascade’s cannabis logo lawsuit reached the court in July

Both parties involved in the lawsuit alerted the court in July of this year about their plans to settle the disagreement through the filing of a joint motion. However, the terms of the settlement were not revealed.

Boise Cascade argued that their logo similarities would “cause confusion, to cause mistake, and/or to deceive customers and potential customers” into thinking that the cannabis company and the lumber specialist are somehow affiliated. However, NETA did not admit to being at fault.

“As alleged in our complaint, because of the similarity between NETA’s tree-in-a-circle logo and Boise Cascade’s decades-old Tree-in-a-Circle trademarks, Boise Cascade is concerned that NETA’s logo will dilute, weaken, or tarnish the reputation and distinctiveness of Boise Cascade’s Tree-in-a-Circle trademarks,” said Boise Cascade’s attorney David Viens during a discussion with Masslive reporters.

No money was awarded to either party and, although NETA’s new logo is now blue, it is not overly different to the logo that Boise Cascade disputed against.

NETA and Boise Cascade’s logo isn’t the first cannabis logo dispute to arise

The nascent cannabis industry is stirring up plenty of excitement and with this excitement comes a great deal of disagreement, too. Numerous trademark-related lawsuits have cropped up in the legal weed space as of late.

One such example was the lawsuit filed by Woodstock Ventures against a company that was advertising its products under the “Woodstock” banner. Then there was Tapatio – a company based in Vernon, California that specializes in a popular type of hot sauce – which fought against a cannabis company called Trapatio for using its sombrero-embellished “Charro” logo to promote weed-infused hot sauce.

Another cannabis logo lawsuit arose between Citibank and a Cathedral City-based pot shop called “Citidank”. The lawsuit claimed that the names were too similar. Hip-hop artist Snoop Dogg and the National Hockey League’s Toronto Maple Leafs were also at loggerheads last year, after the rapper was accused of “copying” the hockey league’s logo for his Leafs by Snoop cannabis brand.

The famous Gorilla Glue strains were even forced to change their branding to GG4 and GG5, after adhesive company Gorilla Glue became fed up of sharing its name.