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Posted on Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 2:59 p.m.

Eden Foods suing Obama administration over contraceptive coverage mandate

By Ben Freed

Eden Foods, a natural food company founded in Ann Arbor in the late 1960s, is suing the Obama administration over contraceptive coverage mandated by the Affordable Care Act.

According to its website, Eden Foods is a “principled natural food company,” and the oldest natural and organic food company in North America. The company moved its headquarters to Clinton, Mich. in 1980.


Courtesy image

The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for Eastern Michigan in Detroit, alleges that the government violates Eden Foods' and CEO Michael Potter’s first amendment rights by mandating that the company provide contraception as part of its health care coverage for employees.

District court judge Denise Hood denied the plaintiff’s request for an immediate temporary restraining order but set a May 10 hearing date for the case.

Eden Foods has partnered with the Thomas More Law Center and is represented in the case by Erin Mersino. According to the Thomas More Center, Mersino is representing four companies filing suits against the department of Health and Human Services in relation to the ACA.

Earlier in March, Mersino obtained a preliminary injunction against enforcement of the ACA mandates on behalf of Thomas Monaghan, founder of Domino’s Pizza and owner of Domino’s Farms.

Thomas More says both Monaghan and Potter are Roman Catholics and say that they object to paying for their employees contraceptive coverage on moral grounds. According to a report in Salon, Potter has joined of other leaders of brands with progressive reputations in speaking out against the ACA including the CEOs of Whole Foods and Lululemon.

Eden Foods’ 128 employees are covered under Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Michigan, which is currently going through its own transition to a nonprofit mutual insurer. According to Thomas More’s website, Potter had been able to exclude “lifestyle drugs” from his company’s Blue Cross policy for years, but the insurer acted unilaterally in instituting the new ACA mandated coverage.

Potter was not available for comment Monday but will be speaking with later this week.

Ben Freed covers business for You can sign up here to receive Business Review updates every week. Reach out to Ben at 734-623-2528 or email him at Follow him on twitter @BFreedinA2


Joe Hood

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 : 1:16 a.m.

Mpope: I'm sure it was a journalistic oversight that the entire story wasn't presented by this article.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:18 a.m.

part 1: why hasn't reported Potter's statement on the lawsuit? 17 April 2013 Greetings, Please be discerning consumers. Grotesque mischaracterizations about Eden Foods' action related to the Health & Human Services (HHS) mandate, Affordable Care Act, are most regrettable. On March 21st, 2013 a press release announced our lawsuit against the unconstitutional government overreach in the HHS mandate. This announcement was made to the media and general public. We apologize for the unintended consternation given rise to by this action. Eden Foods' health care provider is required by the HHS to comply with all details of the Affordable Care Act. Parts of the mandate violate the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment of the United States Constitution, the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and the Administrative Procedure Act. This overreach of the federal government infringes on religious freedoms. It is discriminatory that not all employers have to comply with the HHS mandate. Millions of people and thousands of companies are exempt. The exemptions under the Act are illogical, inconsistent, and contributing factors to our lawsuit. For instance, McDonald's Inc. and 166 unions are exempt. Small employers are exempt. Individuals who practice certain faiths are exempt, while individuals who practice other faiths are not. Federal employees are exempt, and this is hypocritical. There is no exemption for the religious freedoms of employers.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:22 a.m.

part 2: Eden employee benefits include health, dental, vision, life, and a fifty percent 401k match. The benefits have not funded "lifestyle drugs," an insurance industry drug classification that includes contraceptives, Viagra, smoking cessation, weight-loss, infertility, impotency, etc. This entire plan is managed with a goal of long-term sustainability. We believe in a woman's right to decide, and have access to, all aspects of their health care and reproductive management. This lawsuit does not block, or intend to block, anyone's access to health care or reproductive management. This lawsuit is about protecting religious freedom and stopping the government from forcing citizens to violate their conscience. We object to the HHS mandate and its government overreach. This is an important matter that deserves attention from us all. Our actions have been, and will remain, principled and transparent. Eden's focus is pure food, ethical business practice, and the nurturing of all people and the planet. Respectfully, Michael Potter, President


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 3:21 p.m.

I found this to be quite interesting. The fact that they won't put a warning label on their soy milk. Babies have died and they refuse to even put a warning on the label. eden-foods-opposed-to-birth- control-but-sells-soy-milk/ 2013/04/11/organic-eden- foods-quiet-right-wing-agenda/


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 4:34 p.m.

i agree, sayzme? these guys are monsters. they refuse to put SEVERAL life-saving warning labels on their soy milk. to wit" "warning. drowing in soymilk is lethal." "warning. waterboarding with soy milks is detrimental to your health." "warning. mixing soy milk with explosives makes it explosive. don't do it." "warning: no lifeguard on duty. keep away from open bodies of soy milk." "warning: "injecting heroin mixed with soy milk will probably kill you." "warning: soy milk is not baby food. neither is cat chow. don't feed it to your baby" monsters, i tell ya. and hypocrites.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 1:02 p.m.

What is all this religious bashing? Business owners have rights, just like women, men, gays, etc. have rights. We can't all be the same, so choose who you are going to follow.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 1:08 p.m.

Who's bashing religion?

Joe Hood

Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 5:26 a.m.

This issue is not about women but men who fear commitment. Hell, not even just the commitment of kids and marriage but the responsibility of paying for a particular behavior. Wake up guys and grow some.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 3:15 p.m.

joe, i disagree. why shouldn't a man expect to sow his wild (or unwild, however the case may be) oats wherever and with whomever he wishes? so long as the chosen partner is free and willing, why should he expect to suffer any natural outcome for the sexual act? Man is HAPPY to finally proclaim that SEX is UNIQUE among ALL the acts and actions in the whole wide world, in that it is finally EXEMPT from any natural outcome!! science and a (it's about TIME) diminished view of heterosexual intercourse has rendered it so. Man can happily thank his lucky stars! my sadness lies herein: the FREEDOM (or ostensible LACK of freedom) of the partners in the sexual act. did you know, Joe, that female employees of Eden Foods are not anywhere NEAR working in paradise? did you know they're indentured servants in an equivalent Hell?? their employer has chained them to the wall to ensure their productivity-- both in actual work and in a plenitude of pregnancies. the women have no freedom. no choice. no options. it's Eden Foods-work-work-work and multitudinous pregnancies until they die. this has got to stop. these women should be allowed to participate freely and without restraint (not financial, not societal and certainly not religious) in the free market of outcome-free sex just like men do.

A Voice of Reason

Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 2:30 a.m.

Are people mandated to work at Eden Foods? Separation of Church and State only pertains to issues that liberals think are right. Why is the state dictating what and what is covered in contraceptive care? Keep the government out of my sex life please!


Thu, Apr 18, 2013 : 3:12 a.m.

is the owner forcing one hundred and twenty eight employees to remain employees? is EDEN FOODS forcing the female percentage of the one hundred and twenty eight employees to NOT use birth control? no on both counts. they just don't want to be MANDATED to pay for it. i wish you HHS supporters could hear yourselves talk. you'd be astonished at the anti-critical thinking currency being traded around here.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 3:27 p.m. are almost correct! Eden Foods, an independently owned natural food company, is just as interested in the "Creation and Maintenance of Purity in Food®" as the maintenance of purity in your uterus: the company is suing the Obama administration for exemption from the contraceptive mandate. Owner Michael Potter believes sex is for baby-making alone, and hopes to force his 128 employees to follow suit.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 3 p.m.

it would seem that female employees of Eden Foods are, in fact, not anywhere NEAR paradise, instead, they're indentured servants in Hell. their employer has chained them to the wall and mandates a plenitude of pregnancies. the women have no freedom. no choice. no options. it's Eden Foods-work-work-work and multitudinous pregnancies until they die. this has got to stop.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 2:12 a.m.

I'm not going to re-read all 147 of these comments to find out of Eden Foods pays for the "lifestyle drug" Viagra. Do they? Do they also pay for infertility treatment for couples? What if I am of the opinion that having children in a test tube when nature says you're not fit to is a "lifestyle"? Does that mean I get to tell people what coverage they deserve or not?


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 12:07 a.m.

one hundred and forty six (and counting) comments. most of which disparage Eden Foods for fighting to NOT purchase coverage to purchase contraceptives. the hating is to the various discordant tunes of: choice freedom women hating religious intolerance religious fanaticism the general stupidity of religious beliefs the 'just curious' ponderings of the 'what if' and 'so you're saying' crowd. untenable analogies and some. and some. one hundred and forty six of them (plus.) and not single syllable of reason as to why a hard working, successful, female employee of Eden Foods should not be responsible to purchase her own contraceptives. women. where's your self-respect? how does this NOT embarrass you?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 8:29 p.m.

I have to laugh when people compare Obama and his administration to what happened in the Soviet Union and Communist countries, as is the case with a reply to one of my entries. Either that person has never left the United States, or he/she has no idea what socialism and/or communism are really all about. Not sure why they have to invent the lies they do to scare people. They seem to have no issue with the radical right infringing on our liberties but take almost fanatical opposition to anything that smacks of the common vs the individual good. Not sure what they are so afraid of. They would have loved Joe McCarthy (and must love his re-incarnate, Senator Cruz).


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 7:15 p.m.

Seems like a disconnect for Ultra-Catholics to object to contraceptives. Contraception prevents the more radical form of birth control. And anyway, the majority of Catholics approve the practice. Human beings concerned about morality should be promoting family planning not objecting to it. Let the BOYCOTT begin! Remember how Domino's pizza stock tanked the last time Monaghan started going on about birth control? He had to be muzzled in order to save the company.

Alan Goldsmith

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 4:57 p.m.

"Thomas More says both Monaghan and Potter are Roman Catholics and say that they object to paying for their employees contraceptive coverage on moral grounds." Speaking of morality issues, what about drunk drivers who kill their passengers and then get off with minimal prison time because of being able to hire expensive lawyers? Please compare/contrast this issue with the morality of 'recreational' drugs. Which is less moral?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:18 p.m.

Thank you. Better stated than my comment which was removed.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 4:28 p.m.

WHOLE FOOD - WHOLE CARE: I support Eden Company and it has nothing to do with my religious beliefs. I do not want to simply blame President Obama for imposing this health care policy. I want to direct the attention of our readers towards the failure of leaders in medical education and health care systems who lack the courage to define ordinary terms like man, food, and care/well-being. Unless we define man in all of his dimensions, we will not be able to arrive at a proper understanding of the food that man consumes and its relationship to man's well-being. I define man as a physical, mental, moral, social, spiritual, and created being. Whole Food and Whole Care serve to promote the well-being of man in each of these six dimensions. The problem of contraception will not exist if man is viewed as a moral, spiritual, and created being. Man's social relationships must reflect a concern for the spiritual well-being of the partners of those relationships.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 4:21 p.m.

Just wondering, does this mean that men who work for their company will be unable to get a vasectomy also, or does Eden Foods just hate women?.... I have met many women over my life who had to take birth control for other reasons.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:59 p.m.

I guess the question is which do they hate more -- Obama or women?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 3:32 p.m.

Well I won't be buying anything Eden anymore!


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:40 p.m.

Just like Domino's Pizza, I now will refuse to patronize anything to do with Eden Foods. I also have chosen to no longer do business with Papa John's Pizza nor with Hurricane Grill & Wings because of their stances against the ACA. Hopefully enough people will take similar stances and these companies will eventually be just memories in the history of business.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:49 p.m.

Does that come before or after Obama enslaves the "white race" in FEMA camps?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:06 p.m.

Soon with this president, you will be able to enjoy the empty shelves of the communal stores. Remember the scenes in the former Soviet Union. Comrade, we are on the same path of the collective lifestyle. Bully for you!


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:12 p.m.

There's been a lot of gushing here recently about the new Lululemon store in Arbor Hills Crossing and its proximity to the equally gushy Whole Foods across the street. Can we get some in-depth reporting on how their CEOs are handilng ACA and the contraceptive mandate? Or are they just trying to keep it quiet?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 3:17 p.m.

My understanding is that the WF and Lululemon CEO's are opposed to ACA because of cost implications having nothing to do with religious objections and birth control.

The Picker

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 11:45 a.m.

Another example of why health care should NOT be a part of ones employment.

gerald brennan

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 10:39 a.m.

Why should businesses be forced to pay for anyone's health care in the first place? Is this not arbitrary? If it were my business, and I were being forced by the feds to violate my personal beliefs, I would at least object, and at most refuse to comply. Why can "liberals" (almost always a paradoxical use of the word in context) not extrapolate the nature of this coercion to see where it might well end up?

Pamela Bethune

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 10:36 a.m.

There is really no good reason to keep low dose contraceptives as prescription drugs. We can respect their beliefs and still have contraceptives available without the cost of a visit to the doctor on top of the cost of the drug.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 10:03 a.m.

One thing is clear; this is NOT about religion. His FB page says this: Religious Views SPIRITUALITY Not religion What Michael Potter is really about is an aversion to Obama. It has nothing to do with religion.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 9:52 p.m.

aversion to Obama policies is good enough reason for me.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:53 a.m.

"Potter had been able to exclude "lifestyle drugs" from his company's Blue Cross policy for years" Contraceptives are only considered a "lifestyle drug" by people with extreme sexual hangups. Grow up. You know what else is a "lifestyle drug"? Lipitor for people who can't stop eating junk like pizza.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:33 a.m.

I didn't know condoms were mentioned in the Bible. Was there a re-edit?

Jack Gladney

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:14 a.m.

Attention: Group Think Tolerance Brigade. Their are outlier CEOs in our midst. We shall all cease to eat organic products from Eden and Whole Foods. We shall then all change our Facebook and Twitter avatars to pictures of the chemical warning label "Mr. Yuck" to show our support for "wymyns' health." We shall then have someone at a local news operation count the number of avatars that have been changed to Mr. Yuck and thry will report on our success. From there, um well, you know... Rabble, rabble. Then we'll boycott some place that sells fried chicken about gay marriage or something.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:04 a.m.

Ah, the Thomas More-or-Less Law Center... they have quite the losing record. Cross off Eden Foods as a place to shop. Wonder what form of birth control CEO Potters wife uses?

Chester Drawers

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 3:32 p.m.

Michael Potter is in his 60's, so unless he has traded the original Mrs. Potter in on a trophy model, her birth control worries are probably long gone!


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:46 a.m.

I, too, just became a "former" Eden customer.

Michigan Reader

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:15 a.m.

Michael Potter just wants to exercise his own religious beliefs. He isn't trying to impose them on his employees.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 3:40 p.m.

He hopes to force his 128 employees into agreeing that sex is for baby making ONLY. So yeah, he is trying to force his beliefs on his employees


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 11:46 p.m.

nekm1's response sounds very much like "my way or the highway." I guess that makes him a leftist then, correct? Or does it just mean he is one in the position to best judge? If so, I salute his absolute wisdom! Gosh, I hope when i grow up that I can be so smart!


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:03 p.m.

it doesn't fit with the left. They believe in my way or the highway on everything. No ball and chain on any employee. You don't like it, leave.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:24 a.m.

Yes, he is.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:02 a.m.

I am just so disappointed in Eden's. Thought this would have been beneath them. So sad.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:56 a.m.

Eden Foods has not covered their employees contraceptives for 45 years and now all of a sudden that's a problem?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:07 a.m.

yeah, a2citizen. have you heard about the socialist, unconstitutional HHS mandate?

Michigan Reader

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:20 a.m.

Have you heard of the HHS mandate?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:47 a.m.

Wow. I am seeing a LOT of "don't tell ME what coverage I'll get" and "how dare you force me to bow to what you will cover," etc. comments here. You guys DO know that every company everywhere DOES tell you what coverage you can have, right? The whole point of employer health care analytics is figuring out what plans, coverages, etc. to offer employees. I've worked at several small companies that didn't even offer insurance. Let's all go out and boycott them too, shall we? Look at how they force their "no health care" beliefs on us. I thought people in Ann Arbor were intelligent. Everyone is totally free to opt in or out of health care plans offered by their employer. With lots of employers you even have a choice betwen different plans or opting out altogether. The only thing forcing anything here is the government forcing the company to offer a specific type of healthcare. That's the forcing. The only one happening.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:05 a.m.

"I thought people in Ann Arbor were intelligent." ooops.

Jonathan Blutarsky

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:37 a.m.

Too bad - Eden makes the best lentils, but not good enough to make my conscious waver, I'll never by any of their products again.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 9:51 p.m.

steak? thanks, jonathan. i'll buy my own.

Jonathan Blutarsky

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:16 a.m.

No steak for you then...


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:05 a.m.

waiter, i'll take whatever jonathan ISN'T having.

Bryan Ellinger

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 11:47 p.m.

It's cool to want insurance-covered contraception. It's cool to want business owners to butt out. However, to frame the debate as though the very existence of contraception is at risk is disingenuous. Down with dogma!


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 11:30 p.m.

wounder if Thomas Monaghan, has a stake in this company?

Chase Ingersoll

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 11:20 p.m.

That's the irony of people willing to spend lots of their own money for natural food free of genetic modification and chemicals, even as they demand others to pay for UN-NATURAL substances that alter their natural hormone balances in an effort to prevent natural processes and kill their own reproductive cells. And what will follow this post are examples of how nasty they can be to anyone who happens to point this out publicly. Chase


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:04 a.m.

no nasty comments from me.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 11:25 p.m.

I totally agree with Chase. Why when there are other forms of contraception available like condoms should I pay for their birth control pills. will I have to pay for vasectomies next?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:39 p.m.

Good luck and hope you win. Obamacare needs to go. If it is not good enough for those who voted it it, then it is not good enough for us citizens.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:23 p.m.

@ Superior and may want to do your own research instead of believing the nonsense Sean Hannity and Alex Jones puke out on a daily basis. Congress is NOT "exempt" from ACA. But keep on trying to spread lies, educated Americans see through FAUX noise! rickungar/2011/12/08/ congress-exempted-from -obamacare/

Superior Twp voter

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:54 a.m.

Exactly Carole. Commentors above did not comprehend? Their legislators "recused themselves" from Obama's obomination.

Sandy Castle

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2 a.m.

Carole, nobody is exempt from the ACA. NOBODY. You must be getting your information from Facebook photos. Factcheck is readily available to everyone, you should consider using it.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 11:37 p.m.

Truly sad & pathetic comment. I hope you have good health & healthcare insurance forever because without healthcare insurance.... it's scary. Thanks to Obamacare...children can maintain healthcare until they are 26 and so on.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:22 p.m.

Pretty soon Monsanto is going to be suing our ovaries over fertilization rights.

Reverend Bubba X

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:04 p.m.

Violating the corporation's and CEO's First Amendment rights? A spurious argument worthy of the Devil. Sounds more like purgatory than Eden.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:46 p.m.

Since when is alright for the government to impose mandates that you may oppose for whatever reason, if the employees feel that they are being victimized then you have every right to terminate your employment, no one is forcing you to stay no one is forcing you to patronize no one is demanding you to change your beliefs. Why is it that the left progressive can demand a certain liberty and yet a conservative is demonized when he decides not to conform nor believes in whatever he feels that is right for him. Hypocrisy at it's best.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:02 a.m.

walker: woot.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:03 p.m.

I'm not saying Obamacare is good; I'm not sure. What I'm saying is that selecting contraceptives as the thing you won't cover is an attack on women. Access to contraceptives is a basic part of healthcare for women. If I were an employee, you can be sure I would quit. But I can also, as a consumer, vote with my feet and my wallet. If you want to shop more at Eden Foods because of this, that is of course your choice. But I suspect that this was a stupid decision for them, strategically.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:44 p.m.

Also suggest anyone who cares should call Whole Foods (they carry Eden Foods products) and complain. Their number is 734.975.4500.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:02 a.m.

Chase, you've put your finger on the problem. Companies that have a problem with Obamacare should take their argument to the people who passed it -- congress. To use access to contraception as a ploy to attack Obamacare is cynical and disingenuous. And the Republican party wonders why it has a problem attracting young people and women?

Chase Ingersoll

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 11:23 p.m.

Yeah, call Whole Foods and complain that a natural food company doesn't want to subsidize it's employees putting chemicals in their bodies that will kill their reproductive cells and do who knows what else to their hormones? Founder of Whole Foods has already come out against Obamacare.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:59 p.m.

Why don't you call China and see how they treat population growth?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:47 p.m.

Thanks I'll make sure they continue to purchase products or else I'll stop doing business with them.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:20 p.m.

I urge everyone who cares to go to the eden foods website, where they have a "contact us" page, and also call the store in Tecumseh. Number is 517 456-7457.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:16 p.m.

An attack on women everywhere, pure and simple. Contraceptive use is what allows women to control family size, be productive in the workplace, educate their children.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:57 p.m.

So does abstinance. and far more reliable.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:11 p.m.

Since I cherish the First Amendment more than anything this country represents (ideally), I have to agree with nekm1 that Eden should not be bullied into going against their principles. And, likewise, I get to act with mine just like certain good citizens of Montgomery taught us and use boycott to exercise mine. It's too bad, too, because I now have to choose between what previously for me was a chance to support local products (Eden) or standing behind my belief that this is a form of discrimination against women and no matter how you believe about being "pro life" vs "pro choice", it's still not trusting women (and men) to make decisions for themselves and their bodies based on one person or group's religious beliefs. Has anyone considered that not only does forcing your religious beliefs on someone else violates the first clause of the First Amendment (Congress shall make no law regarding establishment of a religious faith) as well as the next part (to worship freely) since letting one group worship freely might indeed fringe on another group's to worship freely. And since we are hopefully moving forward with health care for all, that means ALL, not some of the people. I really would hate to think that a company no matter how private, gets to cherry pick which personal health decisions it can exempt itself from. This could violate Federal and state employment discrimination rules and laws, too, based on some interpretations.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:03 p.m.

I am now adding Eden Foods to the list of businesses I will not do business with, along with Dominoes, Whole Foods, lululemon, and others who are taking this dinosaur position.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 11:26 p.m.

Dominos and Thomas Monaghan parted company years ago. He might own a bit of stock, but he is not listed by NASDAQ as a major owner anymore ( The article could have said "former owner of the Detroit Tigers" as well and be equally correct. Today the Tiger's belong not to the family that founded Domino's but to the family that founded Little Caesar's.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:02 p.m.

Exactly, Great Lakes Lady and buildergirl. Why contraceptives? There are so many other pick-and-choose "sins", that if strictly reasoned as a whole, would deny anyone healthcare - for any reason. Why is no one challenging ACA on grounds that God will provide and if you suffer, it is God's will? Why should you cover your employees' blood transfusion and similar services if your religion does not allow it? I don't see a lot of JW of Christian Scientists suing. Why cover childbirth expenses for employees that are single (unwed sex!) or *gasp* gay. Or cover treatment for HIV and AIDs, because, you know, THOSE people. Where do you draw the line enforcing your religious beliefs on others and the health and welfare of society?

Great Lakes Lady

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:52 p.m.

Why is birth control such a hot topic? If you want it, buy's been on the market forever so it can't be that expensive. Why does your employer have to cover it? There are many cancer drugs and therapies.....and chiropractic treatments that health insurance won't pay for. I personally pay a lot for my health insurance.....for catastrophic insurance. I have to pay for office visits, medications, etc. until I reach a very high amount in the thousands of dollars, at which time I would get some relief. The better your insurance coverage, the higher the cost, and the likely hood that you run to the doctore for ever little minor thing, especially when it's not out of your pocket.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 4:36 a.m.

Yes it IS that expensive! Without insurance it can be over $100 a MONTH.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:06 p.m.

Not all birth control is inexpensive; a Mirena IUC costs somewhere around $750. Some daily pills cost up to $50/month. The reason health insurance works is that everyone pays into a pool and then get benefits as they're needed. Most women will need some type of hormonal therapy or birth control at some point. To say that they are excluded from this benefit is discriminatory. It also makes no financial sense to discourage women from getting and using birth control. Even an uncomplicated pregnancy costs literally tens of thousands of dollars for prenatal care and giving birth in a hospital.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:40 p.m.

It would be interesting to know what are considered "lifestyle" drugs. Is medicine for cancer for a 3 pack a day smoker a "lifestyle" drug? Are ed medicines covered? If you get a note from your doctor stating the purpose of the medication is not purely for birth control, but another valid condition for the prescription, can you get it covered? Does your employer's right of belief/right of freedom override your own?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:38 p.m.

It's time to restart the Our Gang films, He-Man Women Haters club. Where is Spanky and Alfalfa when we need them the most? Oh yes we have Monaghan and Potter for the officers.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:36 p.m.

Last time I checked, having a uterus is not a "lifestyle". Eden can say goodbye to me as a customer.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:55 p.m.

No, it isn't a lifestyle, it is a "pre-existing" condition. Any doubt why the most obstinate people against contraception are men, and usually of a certain race/color! Hmmm, sounds like the description of a certain party that wants to assure it will continue losing elections.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10 p.m.

Not until you use it in a way they don't approve of.

Center of Left and Right

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:23 p.m.

"Potter has joined of other leaders of brands with progressive reputations in speaking out against the ACA including the CEOs of Whole Foods and Lululemon." RE: Whole Foods, are they also part of a suit against ACA? I have no problem with anyone speaking out against something they believe in. I DO have a problem if they try to force their beliefs on others by taking choices away. Soooo - can I still shop at Whole Foods, or do I find an alternative?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:22 a.m.

CLX is right. You can also selectively (and maybe begrudgingly) shop at Kroger, Meijer, Hiller's, Busch's, Plum Market, and Costco, all of which have, with varying degrees of quality and selection, decent organic- and natural-food options. Most, unlike pretentious and holier-than-thou Whole Foods, have unionized work forces, and none, to the best of my knowledge, oppose the Affordable Care Act. And don't forget People's Food Co-op. Live south of town? Then try Fresh Market and Phoenix Earth Food, both in Toledo. Unfortunately, Good Food West in Canton has closed.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:18 a.m.

Find an alternative. Overpriced and faux-healthy. Nothing likeable about that CEO. Tons of great local markets here - no one needs the trendy Whole Foods.

Angry Moderate

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:37 p.m.

" I DO have a problem if they try to force their beliefs on others by taking choices away." Like, say, the choice to not pay for contraception?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:31 p.m.

And where will I buy my see-thru yoga pants?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:23 p.m.

Don't let the government bully you and those that choose not to patronize so be it, buy your food from the government.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:18 p.m.

If I were a CEO, I would also not want to cover any treatment/drugs associated with gluttony-related illnesses, such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, dementia, cancer,etc. Gluttony is a sin. One of 7 deadly ones. Don't remember if use of contraceptives was listed in the bible. Maybe spilling seed *ahem*was the one I recall?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:11 p.m.

I bought things from them in the past thinking I was helping a local company. I don't want to help a company that is trying to force their morals on everyone else. We don't live in a Theocracy...sorry Eden, not buying anymore


Tue, Aug 27, 2013 : 12:11 a.m.

Hmmm ... sounds like you would be fine forcing YOUR morals on everyone else.

Joanne Scharich

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:08 p.m.

So does Eden's objection to "lifestyle drugs" also include not paying for erectile dysfunction treatment? Because if they're objecting to contraception on Roman Catholic religious grounds, then they probably should object to ED treatment as well.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:51 p.m.

No, as long as the men who buy the drugs agree to to undergo anal ultrasound as part of a check for underlying prostate problems to their ED issue.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:56 a.m.

Does it include "lifestyle drugs" for people with high cholesterol who refuse to stop eating?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 9:02 p.m.

except that ED treatment can help with the procreation of children for people with a medical condition that renders them unable to without it, whereas contraceptives prevent the procreation of children from people who would otherwise be able to. The only alternatives to ED treatment I can think of are in-vitro fertilization (more expensive) or finding yourself a more attractive partner (also usually more expensive), whereas alternatives to employer-sponsored contraception include: keeping it in your pants (free), pull out (free) or use a condom (cheaper). Why should your employer be forced to pay for an unnecessary treatment for you for a problem that you can solve on your own for cheaper?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:06 p.m.

Any chance we could strip Thomas More of their Ann Arbor mailing address? If there is anything less "Ann Arbor" than they are I can't think what it would be. They should slink off to Florida with Monaghan's "college".


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 12:07 p.m.

We are intolerant. That's why they should sneak off to Florida to be with their brethren.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:12 a.m.

TB - You coulda been less wordy, viz., "Ann Arbor - The City of Tolerance. Unless you are intolerant."


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:41 p.m.

Ann Arbor - The City of Tolerance. Unless you are a Christian or a law firm representing a person or entity with Christian beliefs, in which case GTFO and take your mailing address with you. If your beliefs aren't progressive and enlightened like mine then they have no business being associated with MY city.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:04 p.m.

Too bad. They just lost my business, and I've been loyal since they first started here. Taking away their female employee's choice for their own bodies and lives is not the ethic I remember that company for. They apparently want their employees barefoot and pregnant at the will of the employer.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 9:33 p.m.

"taking away their female employee's choice for their own body....." you mean if Eden Foods would WIN the case against gov'e mandate, the female employees would lose their choice for their own body? wow. that really IS a big deal. on the other hand, if all you mean is that Eden won't pay for their female employees 'choice for their own body' well, then.... personal responsibility wins they day, eh?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:58 p.m.

Well, they just lost me as a potential customer, if I ever was.....


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:56 p.m.

I am not going to buy from a company whose leaders use their personal religious convictions to trump the welfare of their employees. Don't like contraceptives? Don't use them, but don't tell me I can't and you can pick and choose which medical care I will receive as your employee.

Joe Hood

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:49 p.m.

Don't like child abuse...


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:01 a.m.

don't like contraceptives? don't buy them. not for self, not for employees.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:45 p.m.

He is paying for it after all. If his employees want contraceptives then let them either buy them or the coverage. Ford and GM never used to have coverage for them, don't know about now.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:34 p.m.

They never forced you not to use contraceptives. They only refuse to PAY for your contraceptives. If you want them so bad, pay for them yourself or find another job that will. It's not like an employer thinks to themselves "my personal religious convictions trump the welfare of my employees, so I'm not going to pay for their contraceptives". People with these religious convictions believe not providing contraceptives is for the best welfare of their employees. Why should what you believe is in your best welfare trump what they believe is in your best welfare if they are the ones paying for it?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:52 p.m.

I suggest that maybe they move their business to Vatican City, they would fit in better there...


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:01 a.m.

yes. those Vaticanites enjoy HIGH QUALITY natural foods, too.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:49 p.m.

Yet another company to never do business with.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:45 p.m.

well, dissapointing as this is, that settles that. See Ya Eden.

Lee Katterman

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:45 p.m.

There is no justification for objecting to contraception, in my view. This position is a holdover from the worst traditions of religion.

Joe Hood

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:48 p.m.

Do you believe people can have opinions and moral beliefs? Would you like others to share your view?


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 2:09 a.m.

Well stated.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:52 p.m.

Whew. I was hoping you'd feel that way. Now that we know your personal opinion on this matter I think it settles it for the rest of us.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:45 p.m.

So let me get this straight, the company is suing the government saying that the government is infringing on their moral grounds, and then want to turn around and force their morels on their employees? That is not right. It really should be up to the employee if they want to opt in out of that portion of the health care.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 10:35 p.m.

well, except these aren't normally separate little insurance packages - health coverage, maintenance, major don't get to insure healthcare for your foot - and as such an employer dictating healthcare coverate for a woman uteris is just the guys still trying to control woman any way they can. which brings me back to my post...Eden, you are fired because you are run by religious haters.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:25 p.m.

You have freedom of choice, stop crying.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:14 p.m.

It IS up to the employee if they want to opt in or out of contraceptive coverage, they just can't force their employer to pay for it for them. Suppose I want breast implants and a sex change operation because I feel like a woman, should my employer be required to pay for it? Then a few months later I change my mind and want to be a man again, should my employer also be required to pay for that? What's wrong with letting employers choose what they want or don't want to cover? You can buy supplemental insurance or buy your birth control out of pocket. If you're so upset about your employer not paying for your birth control then work for someone else.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:10 p.m.

"force their morels"? I would like somebody for force tasty mushrooms on me. [I know it's just a typo but I couldn't resist]


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:44 p.m.

Do they also want to sue the government to avoid paying taxes that go to the Department of Defense? A life is a life after all. I will add Eden Foods to my list of products not to purchase.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 1:51 p.m.

Joe do you think our military doesn't kill innocent people?

Joe Hood

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:42 p.m.

Do you understand the difference in an innocent life?


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:31 p.m.

Note to self....never buy anything from this company again


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 1:59 a.m.

note to self: double your next food co-op order from Eden Foods!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Woman in Ypsilanti

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:57 p.m.

Oh Ha ha Brad. I should have done the math before opening my big fat mouth/typing fingers.

Woman in Ypsilanti

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:56 p.m.

TDW and Brad. Good luck. This is one of those things where the vast majority of this company's existing customers, like me, seriously disagree with this action. I know that I've bought my last EdenSoy product and I know I am not alone. You can't possibly buy enough to compensate for damage this company is doing to their reputation and sales.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 8:22 p.m.

I'll be quadrupling all my orders. 4 x 0 = 0


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:35 p.m.

Note to from this company whenever I can


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:31 p.m.

I'm always curious if these companies will cover the meds if they are being prescribed for conditions/uses other than contraceptives? I've known numerous girls and women, including Catholics, who've needed to use the pill for medical conditions. Do these companies/health plans then deny coverage? If when you speak with Potter (or other CEOs in the future), this would be an interesting question. Because few medications are used for just one purpose.


Wed, Apr 17, 2013 : 6:35 p.m.

Normally, if the drug is for a medical purpose, such as prescribing a contraceptive to correct a menstrual cycle problem, they're covered by insurance and acceptable to any Church.

Joe Hood

Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 6:40 p.m.

Dog lover: to answer your question, yes. A drug can have different uses, like anything it can be abused to kill.


Tue, Apr 16, 2013 : 4:31 p.m.

Good point. But to differentiate, HIPPA would have to be violated.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:30 p.m.

Life, liberty, and your employee's pursuit of happiness.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:28 p.m.

Good Luck and God Speed to Eden Foods. Don't be bullied into doing anything that this administration mandates. There are two sides to everything, and so long as we even have a Constitution guaranteeing our freedoms, we have to stick up for them.


Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:27 p.m.

Thomas More*** After writing that name 4 times, didn't you think to yourself "Hey isn't that the guy who wrote "Utopia" I read an excerpt from 6 years ago?

Ben Freed

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 : 7:41 p.m.

Thank you for pointing this out. All instances has been fixed. Ben