My Food Bag has penned a stern but tongue-in-cheek response to a legal letter from a German multinational organisation.
Berlin-based food delivery service HelloFresh, via law firm Bird & Bird, requested that My Food Bag refrain from using the phrase "Hello Fresh" in any of its branding.
The company, which has operations in Germany, UK, Australia, and a number of other countries, sent the letter in response to a My Food Bag ad that featured the phrasing "Hello Fresh Start the Programme".
"HelloFresh SE is the sole and unrestricted owner of the word mark 'HelloFresh' inter alia in New Zealand with respect to goods and services... We are therefore exclusively entitled to use the word mark 'HelloFresh' to label our goods and services and to prevent others from using our word mark or descriptions materially similar to our word mark," said the legal letter from the firm.
In response, My Food Bag has decided to give the multi-national a taste of some Kiwi slang with a quirky letter on why it won't be changing its advertising.
Here's the letter in full:
Kia ora Herr Griesel and Herr Ries, Greetings from Aotearoa. We don't often get heavyweight German multinational corporations taking the time to write to us Kiwis. Ka pai. It's pretty cool that you've heard of our awesome Fresh Start programme down here in NZ. What's not cool is you fellas trying to stop us saying "hello" to our Fresh Start family. That's just not the Kiwi way. In fact, we thought you guys must be pulling our leg?! Down here in God's Own, all of us have the right to say hello, kia ora or g'day. Just ask Winston. It sounds like something is weighing on your mind, so we're sending you our Hello Fresh Start pack, so you can kick start your health goals and say hello to a new you. So in short we've decided "yeah, nah", and we wish you fellas a good day. Otherwise our lawyers, Gumboot & Gumboot, are always good for a yarn. They're top draw red bands. Haere rā , The My Food Bag Family
Notably, My Food Bag's ad featured the words "Hello" and "Fresh" on different lines and in different fonts rather than as a single moniker as seen in the HelloFresh branding.
MyFoodBag founder Cecilia Robinson called the legal letter "bizarre", saying that it seems the multinational doesn't want her company to say "hello" to part of its customer base.
"Who would've thought a simple 'hello' could get you in so much trouble? This is a word we have used in our communications with customers since we first launched My Food Bag in 2013, – surprising as that may be – and we will continue to do so," Robinson said.
Robinson said that while it was a serious legal matter, the strange nature of it all demanded a quirkier approach.
She said that this move would be akin to My Food Bag stopping other companies from using the word 'My' in their names.
"We simply wouldn't do that," she said.