Last month the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) refused registration of the slogan THE OTHER RED MEAT for "fresh and frozen salmon," not based on likelihood of confusion, but because it is likely to dilute the distinctive quality of the famous THE OTHER WHITE MEAT slogan of the National Pork Board and National Pork Producers Council. Stay tuned for a more detailed discussion of this interesting case, but in the meantime, a pdf of the decision is here.

A search of the exact phrase "the other red meat" on Google discloses 1,670,000 results, so I’m left wondering whether the proverbial cow is already out of the dilution barn.

It appears, based on my admittedly quick survey, that "the other red meat" phrase is being attributed to a variety of other types of "red" meats that are supposed to be leaner and healthier than beef, well beyond the salmon at issue in the decision, such as bison, tuna, curry goat, lamb, and ostrich, to name a few.

In addition, it appears that in 1996 the identical THE OTHER RED MEAT slogan was federally registered for ostrich meat, and it was abruptly cancelled in 1998, but no indication on the TTAB database that it resulted from a successful cancellation by the National Pork Board and National Pork Producers Council.

At what point does a phrase like "the other red meat," if used to designate a healthy alternative to beef, become so commonplace that such references are incapable of diluting the distinctive quality of the famous pork-related slogan: The Other White Meat?