First Milk is revamping its Lake District brand in a bid to turn it into the country's number three Cheddar brand within the next five years.

New packaging for The Lake District Cheese Co. is being rolled out across the multiples from Monday, supported by a £1m marketing campaign.

The Lake District Cheese Co. brand was launched in 2007 and sales have since reached £26m [Kantar Worldpanel 52w/e 8 August], making it the UK's fifth-bestselling Cheddar brand behind Cathedral City (1), Seriously (2), Pilgrims Choice (3) and Wyke Farms (4).

The brand was now ready to evolve from largely regional brand to national player, said First Milk marketing director Paul Murray. "We were probably seen as a regional brand with regional provenance and we're now making that provenance come to life a bit more and communicating it on a national basis."

The new packaging design and marketing campaign would focus on the brand's regional credentials and taste, he said.

The cues would be presented "in a more contemporary way for greater shelf standout" and the cow and rabbit depicted on the new packs would illustrate the brand's new strapline 'delicious cheese from the land of milk and bunny'.

First Milk also carried out consumer taste tests to determine how best to describe Lake District's mature and extra mature variants, which would now be described on the packaging as 'deliciously moreish' and 'rugged and rich'.

Marketing activity for Lake District would be 'grocery-led', with a poster campaign and in-store magazine features.

The cheese's provenance would be a powerful selling point, said Murray. "We have a very specific origin, with locally sourced milk and investment we're putting back into the local community," he said. "We're doing something very different for the cheese category."

There are no plans for television and radio advertising for the first phase of the campaign.