The co-operative has registered two trademarks with the Intellectual Property Office a mature Cheddar called Tongue Tingler and a vintage Cheddar called Old Wallop. Both trademarks come with a design that looks ready to be used on packs.
In the designs Milk Link has filed with the IPO, Tongue Tingler is described as "smooth & moreish mature Cheddar that packs a punch!". Old Wallop carries the description "tangy & rugged vintage Cheddar that packs a punch!"
The style of the designs is reminiscent of the pack design for Tickler, which uses the description "sweet & tangy, strong & tasty."
Milk Link would not be drawn on its plans for the two designs beyond saying it was always looking at ways to develop new market propositions. "The applications are in their early stages and at this point are potential concepts for a cheese brand," said Clare Dillon, Milk Link head of speciality cheese.
A new brand in either or both of the mature and vintage Cheddar categories would fit well with Milk Link's focus on premium Cheddar. It would also broaden the co-operative's presence across the branded Cheddar category by complementing its Tickler brand, which is only available in extra mature.
In June, Milk Link CEO Neil Kennedy told The Grocer that Milk Link's key consumer brands had performed well, with sales of Tickler launched in 2007 up 32% by volume. He also revealed that Milk Link was keen to "stretch" and develop the Tickler brand, but would not reveal further details. I Can't Believe It's Not Cheddar, which Milk Link produces under licence from Unilever, had performed "to plan," Kennedy added.
Aside from Tickler and ICBINC, Milk Link also produces branded Cheddar under the Cadog brand and has a large own-label cheese business.