business news in context, analysis with attitude

…with brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

• The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Aldi has “announced a series of commitments to ensure 100% sustainable packaging by 2025 … the company is promising reusable, recyclable or compostable packaging and a 15% reduction in overall packaging material.”

The company is promising that by 2020, “all of Aldi-exclusive consumable packaging will include a standardized How2Recycle label … Aldi will implement an initiative to make private-label product packaging easier for customers to reuse.”

Reuters reports that Tesco appears to have solidly emerged from the financial scandals that roiled its operations and management several years ago, posting operating profit that was up 34 percent to the equivalent of $2.89 billion (US), and group sales that were up 11.5 percent to the equivalent of $74.5 billion (US).

The story notes that “Tesco recorded its 13th quarter of like-for-like sales growth in its main UK market with a 1.7 percent rise in the final quarter,” while maintaining its “leading 27.4 percent share of Britain’s grocery market.”

The Washington Post reports that outdoor clothing and gear retailer Patagonia is suing Anheuser-Busch InBev for trademark infringement.

A-B has released a new beer called Patagonia, the name. logo and marketing of which, the lawsuit says “deliberately has attempted to take advantage of the hard-earned reputation that Patagonia has built over the last 40 years as a company dedicated to environmental conservation” … The question at hand, according to legal experts, is whether consumers were led to mistakenly believe that Patagonia was somehow connected to, or collaborating on, Anheuser-Busch’s Patagonia beer.”

The logos look pretty close to me … and just based on that, I’d be inclined to agree with Patagonia the outdoor company. I’m not a lawyer, though, so I have no idea how this will play out … but I do think that Patagonia is right to throw down the gauntlet. The only question is whether the region of South America that also bears the name will come looking for supplies of vests, and maybe beer.
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