Moves to restrict the name Emmental to Swiss ­manufacturers through PGI designation are being closely followed by Lactalis.

Its Emmental - which it describes as a French cheese - is a key pillar in its ­Président brand.

Lactalis UK MD Andy Smith said: "You could argue that it is French because it originated on the border ."

The UK Emmental market is worth some £28m a year

[ACNielsen to March 2006].