BOULDER, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--On the eve of the first legal 4/20 celebration in American history, Colorado’s open marijuana market is seeing its first major business conflict. Bridge Marketing, makers of MED-a-Mints, one of the first edible medical marijuana products, has filed a complaint against Dixie Elixirs for violating the established MED-a-Mints trademark and causing serious harm to the company’s business interests in Colorado and around the world.
“Though medical marijuana has been around for years, the occasion of recreational legalization is a time to educate consumers on safe, responsible use,” said Gary Gabrel, MED-a-Mints inventor and managing partner with Bridge Marketing. “Edible marijuana is not candy. And yet Dixie Elixirs has acted with reckless disregard to business ethics and consumer safety by removing our clear and conservative labeling, and by refusing to offer the product in childproof packaging that we have repeatedly recommended.”
The MED-a-Mints complaint alleges that Dixie violated a contract protecting the MED-a-Mints brand. “By removing our labeling without permission and replacing it with their own, Dixie broke our agreement, and severely harmed the first-to-market advantage that we’ve nurtured for years,” added Gabrel. “Over a year ago we brought a complete mint business to Dixie when they had none, including a solid customer base. They saw the spectacular potential, and at this historic moment, they put their brand on our product and claimed it as their own.”
Beyond the contract violation, Gabrel believes that such aggressive and predatory business practices have the potential to harm the integrity of the entire industry as legalization spreads to more states.
“Everyone is watching Colorado, and it’s critical that our community promote the overwhelming social benefits of legalization by remaining committed to business integrity, safety and responsible use,” said Gabrel. “As business leaders developing and packaging the first products to be sold for legal use, we should have higher priorities than maximizing short-term sales and profits.”
Bridge Marketing has terminated its distribution agreement with Dixie, and today filed a lawsuit claiming contract violation damaging the company’s brand and valuation in light of MED-a-Mints’ five-year history building trust in the medical marijuana market in anticipation of the January 1, 2014 end of prohibition.
“We are accountable to our customers and patients, past, present and future,” said Gabrel. “We have always advocated small doses and healthy formulations, and we’ll soon introduce MED-a-Mints in childproof packaging, just like Tylenol® and aspirin. It’s our responsibility to clarify the difference between recreational and medicinal use, and to address the related safety issues in labeling and packaging.”
For more information, visit www.medamints.com.