Lacombe, LA Man Sues Heinz For Ketchup/Mayo Blend, ‘Metchup’
Lacombe resident Dennis Perry sued the H.J. Heinz Co. because he believed they stole his trademark for his ‘Metchup’, the name he gave the blend of ketchup and mayonnaise. In a nutshell, Perry said Heinz offered him around $45,000 to settle, but he didn’t accept because he thought he deserved more, according to Nola.com. Unfortunately for Perry, it ended with a federal court deciding that Heinz didn’t owe Perry anything.
Perry, 60, said he began mixing up store-bought ketchup and mayo in his kitchen and funneling it into squeeze bottles around 2010. Perry sold Metchup for $5 per bottle from the office of the motel he owns in Lacombe. He said he produced 60 bottles of his ‘Metchup’ and sold at least 34.
I’m an entrepreneur. I come up with ideas left and right. - Dennis Perry
In 2016, Heinz began selling something similar to Metchup in the Middle East. When they decided to market it in the U.S., they began a marketing campaign asking the public to suggest a name for the product. Fans submitted at least 95 names including “Metchup,” “Best Sauce Ever,” “Saucy McSauceFace” and “It’s Fry Sauce You Monsters,” while Kraft Heinz’s marketing team proposed “Ketchonnaise” and “Tomayo.”
Perry sued Kraft Heinz in 2018 following the U.S. launch of Mayochup after learning the company used a mock-up “Metchup” bottle in an internet campaign to name its new condiment.
For photos of the Metchup product, click here.
A U.S. appeals court said he cannot sue Kraft Heinz Co for selling a similar condiment called “Mayochup,” but ordered reconsideration of whether to cancel his trademark registration.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said there was little chance consumers would confuse Mayochup, sold in groceries nationwide under the Heinz brand, with Metchup, sold in the lobby of Dennis Perry’s nine-room Star Motel in Lacombe, Louisiana, next to his used-car lot.
It makes you wonder what’s the use of a trademark, if it doesn’t prevent a competitor from using an identical trademark in connection with identical goods. - Brad Harrigan, New Orleans attorney
Harrigan points out that Metchup was Perry’s one and only trademark, and said he viewed it as his retirement plan.