She has her own production company, magazine and television network — could Oprah Winfrey be entering the world of organic foods and bath and body products?
Recently filed trademark applications with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office seem to indicate as much, with the New York Post uncovering seven total under names like “Oprah’s Organics,” “Oprah’s Harvest” and “Oprah’s Farm."
“The trademarks were filed for Oprah’s farm on Maui to enable the farm to grow and distribute produce on Maui and throughout the Hawaiian Islands," a source told the Post.
Organic foods listed include salad dressings, sauces, soups, dips, frozen vegetables and beverages. Bath and body products would cover soaps, sunscreen, massage oils, hair products and other personal care items.
It's no secret that Oprah, 58, loves Hawaii. The media mogul, who topped $165 million in earnings last year, has been buying up hundreds of acres of land throughout the state for the past decade. Earlier this past January, several websites latched on to the National Enquirer's report that if her OWN channel failed to make it, she might take a stab at farming.
"Oprah's in for the long haul to make OWN a success," a source told the magazine. "But if it doesn't work out she's ready to slap on the overalls and start a new life as a farmer in Hawaii."
So far OWN, launched in 2011, has lost money for its parent Discovery Communications, though the company expects the fledgling network to break even next year.
But should we expect to scoop up some Oprah-branded goods anytime soon? A source that's close to the recent trademark filings told Forbes this may just be a legal move and nothing more.
“The trademark is broader than the intention,” the source said. “But you need to cover the name.”
And naturally, should Oprah wade into the food industry, it's unclear whether her power to influence buyers would extend to their taste buds. It's not easy to re-create the kind of tasty empire that Paul Newman built.
“Newman’s Own has been a consistent hit not because of Paul Newman’s face on the bottle but because people like the taste," Craig Garthwaite, a professor at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management, told Forbes. "Oprah’s got to solve that problem.”
What do you think about Oprah's potential new business ventures? Would you try her organic products?
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