It’s not the only trademark dispute for NatureSweet in recent years.
In November 2010 the company — then named Desert Glory – dropped a suit against Ag-Mart Produce, Inc., when the latter agreed to discontinue a packaging design alleged to closely resemble that of Cherubs.
That packaging was for SweetRipes tomatoes. Plant City, Fla.-based Ag-Mart Produce does business as Santa Sweets Inc.
In October of the same year, Eclipse Berry Farms LLC agreed to take the packaging for its CalFruit grape tomatoes off the market after opposition from Desert Glory. The dispute was settled out of court.
“In both cases, Santa Sweets and Eclipse Berry, we settled way before we had a whole lot of attorneys involved,” Ambelang said. “We came up with amicable settlements and everybody went back to doing business. We’d like to see that happen here, too.”
NatureSweet’s new suit asks the court to award the company any profits Mastronardi Produce makes from the various alleged infringements, as well as to compensate for damages.