We have all heard of General Mills and Pillsbury. But how many of my few readers have heard of the cookie shop My Dough Girl? It is a shop in Salt Lake, making delightful and unique cookies. This little shop services Utah only. It is a business of one little shop and one booth at the Farmers’ Market. In the grand scheme of money-making, it earns very little.
And yet, Pillsbury, a multi-million dollar company, sent My Dough Girl a cease and desist order, which also forbade the little business to talk to the press. Pillsbury is claiming that My Dough Girl is too close to their trademark Dough Boy, that creepy giggling ball of dough.
It seems strange to me that Pillsbury would look at the retro picture of a woman and the 1940’s pin-up cookie names and memorabilia and think, “Gee, they certainly are infringing on our profits and trademark. We had better beat them to a pulp.” Who in their right mind unites vintage names and pictures with a ball of dough that happens to have arms and legs?
The owner of said cookie shop has decided against fighting Pillsbury and General Mills, despite the fact that she’d have a very good case, because doing so would wipe her out. So, she is just going to change her name. This is a gross injustice. This is another fine example of big business destroying our culture. It is a complete injustice for a big business from who-knows-where to come into our state, into our city, and tell our local business owners what they can and cannot do.
Here is my call, my plea: boycott Pillsbury. But don’t only boycott. Write letters and emails telling Pillsbury of your boycott and why you refuse to purchase any more of their products. Boycott General Mills altogether. We cannot let big business destroy the local businesses we know and trust. For, when local progress begins to be curtailed by distant and uncaring corporations, you can bet that far worse travails are not far behind.