In-N-Out Burger sues delivery service DoorDash for screwing with its burgers and brand

In-N-Out: We can handle our own customers, thank you very much.
In-N-Out: We can handle our own customers, thank you very much.
Image: AP Photo/Adam Lau
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The beloved West Coast burger chain In-N-Out Burger has sued the delivery service DoorDash, TMZ reports.

In-N-Out, which takes pride in never freezing its burgers and has received high marks from consumers for quality, service and reputation, is alleging trademark infringement and unfair competition, according to TechCrunch. In-N-Out’s suit is over the use of its trademark on DoorDash’s website, and the lack of control that the burger chain has over quality once DoorDash gets involved.

“Defendant’s use of Plaintiff’s famous trademarks implies that Defendant not only delivers In-N-Out products to its customers, but that the quality and services offered by Defendant is the same as if consumers had made purchases directly from Plaintiff,” the filing says. It also alleges that DoorDash doesn’t adhere to food regulations or keep its burgers hot. In-N-Out, according to the complaint, tried to work things out with the delivery service, contacting them several times and asking them to please stop, but while the delivery service initially complied, they eventually put a knockoff In-N-Out logo back up.

The market is currently awash in online food delivery options, though some, like Caviar, actively partner with the restaurants whose food they deliver. In-N-Out is not the first to give the startup this kind of feedback—while chains like Taco Bell and KFC have openly partnered with it, other eateries have said they don’t want the service involved in their businesses, listing reasons including high fees and consumer misperceptions about actual prices versus DoorDash’s marked up ones. DoorDash is reportedly worth $600 million.

In a statement to Quartz, a DoorDash spokesperson said, ”DoorDash uses its innovative logistics technology to deliver the very best food and products in neighborhoods across the country. While we have various relationships with different merchants, we are proud to help people get their favorite food delivered directly to their door.”