Press Release: November 08, 2019
“Entrepreneur forces Sainsbury’s supplier to change the name of its flagship range of meals”
London - Nov. 2, 2019 – In a landmark win for London based entrepreneur Amar Lodhia and his online meal delivery service Fit Kitchen, Scratch Meals the Grimsby based supplier to Sainsbury’s has today given up all associations it had with its flagship Fit Kitchen brand. In a yearlong legal battle in the High Court, Mr Lodhia has requested Scratch Meals to give up the Fit Kitchen mark. The range, which is now called “Scratch” was designed for Scratch Meals by BBC's Master Chef Winner, Ash Mair and is sold exclusively by Sainsbury’s supermarkets.
Lux-Life Magazine recently awarded the “Best Healthy Food Delivery Service in London” to Mr Lodhia’s Fit Kitchen. As an advocate for food safety and standards, Mr Lodhia claimed that Scratch Meal’s use of the Fit Kitchen brand has caused unabated damage to his business and its reputation. In a detailed list provided, which has been sworn by a statement of truth, a considerable number of serious complaints (34) were misdirected to his business regarding Scratch Meal’s products. Eleven of these complaints involved consumers reporting plastic, glass, stones and pieces of machinery to have been found in their prepared meals, which they purchased from Sainsbury’s.
Mr Lodhia is said to have approached Tom Blackett the former chairman of Interbrand Group. Mr Blackett is well known for being an expert witness in trademark infringement cases and is a published author on branding. Mr Lodhia claims that it was Mr Blackett’s statement to the court in support of his case that ultimately led to the rebrand by Scratch Meals to Scratch.
According to former Environmental Health Officer, Dr William Mason, Scratch Meals products should have been withdrawn from the market or recalled by the Food Standards Agency last year. Dr Mason also gave evidence to the UK Government’s Public Accounts Committee on Food Safety, which put into question the enforcement by North East Lincolnshire Council, the local authority responsible for ensuring food safety where Scratch Meals is based. The committee met on 28th October 2019 at the House of Commons during which Ministers openly questioned Food Standards Agency (FSA) Chief, Emily Miles and Policy Director Steve Wearne regarding the FSA’s handle over local authorities. Mr Wearne said to the Ministers in response to a question that “food standards approaches of local authorities need to be reviewed and reformed. That is why our board is committed to that…only 37% of programmed food standards inspections were undertaken by local authorities last year”
NOTES TO EDITORS:
1. All files, permissions, images, copies of emails and evidence for this release can be found here:
2. Fit Kitchen Ltd was set up in 2015 by aesthetic bodybuilder and athlete Amar Lodhia, who as a former CEO of a national charity and a multi-award winning entrepreneur with a very busy life faced the problem of eating in line with his training goals. It is an online bespoke fresh fit food delivery service, which helps people to manage their daily calorie consumption through its web-based platform.
3. Scratch Meals launched its Fit Kitchen range with just four products in January 2017 in selected Waitrose, Booths and Sainsbury’s stores.
4. Mr Lodhia filed proceedings against Scratch Meals in Intellectual Property and Enterprise Court on 17 October 2018.
5. Public Accounts Committee hearing on Food Safety Standards can be seen here: http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/public-accounts-committee/food-safety-and-standards/oral/106733.pdf
6. Dr William Mason (WM Consultants) Freedom of Information Act request can be seen here: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/food_safety_incidents#outgoing-955358
7. Thomas Richard Blackett: https://www.linkedin.com/in/tom-blackett-79345930/?originalSubdomain=uk
Fit Kitchen Ltd
Sarah White, Public Relations
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