All One God Faith, Inc. v. Organic and Sustainable Industry Standards, Inc. (2010) 183 Cal.App.4th 1186
Plaintiff, (trade name “Dr. Bonner”) sells organic health and beauty products that comply with the voluntary standards of the USDA National Organic Program (NOP). Defendant (”OASIS”) is a mutual benefit trade group who is designing its own organic standard to be used as a certification on member products. Dr. Bonner filed suit seeking an injunction against OASIS based on unfair competition and misleading advertising because Dr. Bonner alleges the OASIS standards do not meet the NOP standards. OASIS filed a anti-slapp motion claiming the complaint attacks its free speech activitie. The trial court denied the motion and the Court of Appeal affirmed.
The Court of Appeal found that OASIS’s speech was not covered by the anti-slapp statute for two reasons:
1) OASIS’s certification activities are not in furtherance of its speech in connection with a public issue or public interest. While formulating an organic standard may constitute protected activity- later certification of products (which Dr. Bonner seeks to enjoin) is not.
2) OASIS’s speech is commercial speech which is not a protected activity on an issue of public interest. Because the OASIS standard is designed to tout the products sold by its members, the speech is commercial and not protected.