The Whole Foods logo adorns a cardboard box at a Whole Foods Market Feb. 22, 2007 in San Francisco.
Justin Sullivan—Getty Images
By Justin Worland
July 28, 2016

Whole Foods wants to call itself the “world’s healthiest grocery store,” an upgrade from the “America’s healthiest grocery store” slogan it has employed for several years. But the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is not having it.

USPTO rejected the food retailer’s application to register the phrase calling it merely “descriptive.” The company now has a six-month window to resubmit its application. A document on the patent office’s website suggests that the office will likely reject trademark descriptive applications and phrases that are likely to be in use elsewhere already.

A Washington Post report suggests that the “world” designation may prove particularly difficult for the company given the company’s relatively small international presence. Evidence showing that customers believe the language in a trademark to be true can improve an application’s chances, according to the report.

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