'This isn't okay': Dirty Dough pushes back on Crumbl Cookies' allegation they stole recipes

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Sunday, October 16, 2022
Crumbl Cookies sues smaller competitors
A Crumbl Cookies lawsuit alleges smaller competitors Dirty Dough and Crave copied their designs. But then they made a more serious allegation.

UTAH -- The battle is heating up in a cookie war.

Little guys are fighting back against a popular chain they say has a crummy case, and the dispute has been getting new attention on social media.

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Billion-dollar Utah-based Crumbl Cookies is suing smaller competitors Dirty Dough and Crave.

Crumbl accused the start-ups of trademark infringement, claiming they copied Crumbl's cookie designs, packaging and even logos. Both companies fiercely denied the claims.

"Our initial reaction to receiving this lawsuit was primarily just shock and frustration," said Crave Cookies Co-founder Trent English.

The not-so-sweet fight went public earlier this year, from ads appearing to poke fun at the cookie giant to billboards saying "cookie's so good, we're being sued."

"Our colors are black and gold. Their colors are pink and black. Our logo is two overlapping cookies with a bite taken out of it. Their logo is a baker wearing a hat with a bite taken out of the hat," English said.

In August, a more serious allegation was made. Crumbl claimed Dirty Dough was playing dirty, and stole dozens of recipes, training videos and trade secrets.

"It's a bad look from where the first ones to stand up and say, 'No, this isn't okay. You can't just sue people without merit.' So then, they keep making up other claims, like stolen documents," said Dirty Dough Founder Bennett Maxwell.

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Lawsuits and all, one Virginia Crumbl store is staying busy, with their fans as loyal as ever.

Crumbl told ABC News that "all brands have the right and responsibility to protect their intellectual property."

"The way the law looks at these things is, okay, two things may look alike, but we want to know if customers are confused. That's the ultimately question of the trademark, trade dress side of things," said EPG Lawyers Partner Jessie Bolling.