Hampton Creek gets to keep the 'Just Mayo' name as long as it changes its label

Just Mayo Hampton Creek Josh TetrickEric Risberg/AP ImagesCEO Josh Tetrick holds a species of yellow pea used to make Just Mayo, a plant-based mayonnaise, at Hampton Creek Foods in San Francisco.

Hampton Creek can keep calling it “Just Mayo” as long as it’s clearly labelled a “spread and dressing” and not a mayonnaise on the label.

Hampton Creek CEO Josh Tetrick told Business Insider that under an agreement with the FDA, his company would make clear that the “Just” in the name refers to justice, not “only.” Meanwhile, the company has amended the label to include the word “spread and dressing” in all caps and to make “egg-free” larger.

Also on the label is the new defintion of just, as in “guided by reason, justice, and fairness.”

The double defintion of “just” was one of the main arguments in the vegan mayo company’s response to an FDA warning letter.

In August, the FDA told the startup that it needed to drop all claims of making mayonnaise since its “Just Mayo” line didn’t contain eggs. Hampton Creek’s claim to fame, which has had top investors sink more than $125 million into the startup, is that it can make mayonnaise using a plant-based substitute rather than eggs.

Hampton CreekHampton CreekThe new Just Mayo label includes a definition of the word Just and lists it as a spread and dressing.

Business Insider obtained Hampton Creek’s official response to the FDA in October, in which the startup argued in its defence that the word “Just” did not refer to only. Hampton Creek also said it should be able to call its products “mayo” because it’s a different word than “mayonnaise.”

“We’re mayo and we’ll continue to be mayo,” Tetrick told Business Insider. “That is the name of the product before, name of the product today, and we’re grateful that they allowed that to hold.”

The FDA and Hampton Creek reached an agreement last night, said Tetrick. In a statement provided to Business Insider, the FDA confirmed that they consider the issue resolved.

“The FDA and the company met to discuss the issues cited in the warning letter and worked together to address them. The company committed to making labelling changes to ensure its products are labelled in a manner that is truthful and not misleading,” wrote an FDA spokesperson. “Therefore, the FDA considers the issues cited in the warning letter to be resolved and will issue a close out letter soon.”

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