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Local Grocers Fight Over Name

The independent, family owned Sprouts Natural Market sues the corporate chain stores that recently changed their name to something almost identical.

A local, family-owned grocery store sued a corporate chain that recently changed its name to something almost identical to their own.

is suing a company that is changing the name of several local stores from to Sprouts Farmers Market.

The locally owned company requested an injunction barring the corporation from using the name in the Temecula area, and a hearing is set for Dec. 29, according to court records.

Henry's and Sprouts Farmers Market recently merged, and the company is changing the names of the Henry's stores to Sprouts.

The name is too similar, and this will hurt the local business, the plaintiffs wrote in a court document.

"With nearly identical names, an identical industry and identical target customers, (Sprouts) Farmers' expansion to the region has caused significant confusion and significantly injured the quality of Sprouts' (Natural Market) name," the document states.

"Further expansion will result in increased confusion and injury that cannot be remedied at law. As a family-owned operation with modest means, Sprouts (Natural Market) has no choice but to aggressively protect the name it has built over the past 20 years doing business in the region," it states.

To read the court record, click on the PDF file above.

The local store was founded in 1989 by Temecula residents Linda Watson and her son, Paul Cook, under the name Health Zone Natural Foods. The company changed its name to Sprouts Natural Market and filed a fictitious business name statement in 2001, according to court records.

BK November 22, 2011 at 09:23 PM
You answered your own question relating to what Vicki and I were talking about. You stated that you see the confusion people are already having. From reading what was written, it is quite confusing. To answer your final question, I don't need to shop there or at any store for vegetables or fruit. I grow my own. While all stores do pass off their expenses to the consumer (an I am aware of that), what I also stated is their price increase because of court costs. I know prices increase for various reasons, but for me to pay for their court costs is not something that I want to do. So to answer your question, No I am not going to not shop anywhere, but I will not shop there.
Winchester Collection November 27, 2011 at 12:03 PM
let the small company keep its own idenity. Getting sick of larger companies stepping on the little guy. Who owns the name?????? If you started a search business called Google paper maps you think Google Search engine would be fine with that? Think again. Henrys should give up the change!!!!!!!!!
BK November 27, 2011 at 03:00 PM
Points well taken Susan! Thank you so much for the clarity and education. I really appreciate knowing what is going on with this. I have been in Henry's before but knokw nothing about where one of these other places Sprouts Farmers Market is located. Must not be one within close proximity to me. I will google it and find one to check them out. Although I know I will not shop there, I will still make an effort to check them out.
BK November 27, 2011 at 03:05 PM
I could really care less about a name. There are people attempting to take others to court because they name their child the same name as they have. If you ask me, each of the markets can be named Winchester's Produce Collection. If people will shop there, so be it. If they decide to drive to San Diego to shop at Juan's Fresh Produce because they don't like the smell of Winchester's, that is what they will do. Again, grow you own and you won't have to worry about any of it. I buy bird seed and that is about the size of it. If it is on sale somewhere else, I'll buy it where it is less. That's just being smart. The name means nothing to me.
Victoria October 02, 2012 at 01:36 AM
Who really cares! Linda has high priced items, of which can be found at Henry's for much less. Especially since she cannot afford to discount items due to her overhead.

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