Hall & Oates File Lawsuit Against Haulin’ Oats Granola

Hall & Oates have filed suit against Early Bird Foods & Co., the maker of Haulin' Oats granola, for infringing on their trademark.

Hall & Oates v. Haulin' Oats

Hall & Oates photo used under a Creative Commons license. Granola photo via Early Bird Foods & Co.’s website.

Get out your best song title puns, Hall & Oates have filed a lawsuit.

“They won’t go for that,” the New York Post reports. “They can’t go for that,” the New York Daily News says. “A maneater, fine,” says AM New York. “A granola eater?” The Guardian dives into the Philadelphia duo’s early catalog with, “Where once they offered the world an Abandoned Luncheonette, Hall & Oates are now trying to close down the breakfast bar, too.”

Yes, Hall & Oates want a granola product to go Big Bam Boom. They’ve sued Brooklyn-based Early Bird Foods & Co., a maker of small-batch granola and other foods, over the company’s Haulin’ Oats granola.

The plaintiff is actually Whole Oats Enterprises, the partnership owned by Daryl Hall and John Oates. The pair met in 1967, when a fight broke out during a bill at the Adelphi Ballroom in West Philly. The band had a string of hit singles and albums in the 1970s and 1980s. And they’ve been quite good at managing their brand, according to the lawsuit. “By virtue of Plaintiff’s extensive use of the marks Daryl Hall and John Oates and Hall & Oates, the marks have developed significant consumer recognition and goodwill,” the lawsuit reads. “The marks Daryl Hall and John Oates and Hall & Oates have come to be widely recognized by the public as identifying plaintiff and artists and their musical group goods and services.”

Attorneys for the group say Early Bird Foods is trying to steal that brand by “trading off of the fame and notoriety associated with the Artists and plaintiff’s well-known marks.” It’s a common tactic, apparently: “Over the years, various third parties have attempted to trade off of the fame and notoriety associated with the artists and plaintiff’s marks, including by attempting to make a connection between the artists’ names and oats-related products.” Then, the kicker:

At this point you have to wonder why Hall & Oates don’t sell their own granola.

Hall & Oates’ lawsuit says the mark is likely to cause confusion between the band and the granola product. It will cause irreparable harm to the Hall & Oates brand, the suit says, if Haulin’ Oats continues to exist. They want the product renamed, and are seeking damages.

Read the lawsuit below.

The Lawsuit Against Haulin’ Oats