Jarlsberg cheesemakers slice through conflict

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Norwegian dairy Synnøve Finden has settled its latest legal battle with dominant dairy cooperative Tine. They were quarreling over Tine’s right to use the brand name “Jarlsberg” and it looks like Tine won.

Newspaper Nationen reported that both dairies have dropped their compensation claims against the other. Synnøve Finden, however, has also promised not to market or distribute any cheese products using even the description “jarlsberg-type” or other similar names on its new Kongsgård cheese (which it has equated to its version of Tine’s Jarlsberg).

Synnøve Finden is also dropping its demand that Tine’s Jarlsberg brand be removed or otherwise ruled invalid in the Norwegian patent registry. The two companies also have agreed on how to cover court costs of the legal conflict. It was heading for an appeals court after Synnøve Finden lost the first round in a local court.

Synnøve Finden had claimed to have extensive documentation that the term “jarlsberg” (with a small “j”) had been used for a type of cheese for more than 150 years, along the same lines as gouda, edamer or cheddar, and long before Tine registered the name in 1971. Synnøve Finden lost its case, however, at a local court in Follo, south of Oslo, and already has removed the term “jarlsberg” from its packaging.

newsinenglish.no staff