back to article Cheeky cheesemaker fails to copyright how things taste

The EU's highest court has rejected an attempt to use copyright law to protect the distinct taste of a food product. The court explained that taste is too subjective to allow a work to be uniquely identified, even using science, so it cannot be protected. The Court of Justice concurred with the expert opinion offered in July …

  1. Locky Silver badge

    As we say up here in Yorkshire when things don't go our way

    Edam

    1. Steve K Silver badge

      Re: As we say up here in Yorkshire when things don't go our way

      ..then you can go and Havarti (and biscuits) to get over it

    2. TRT Silver badge

      Re: As we say up here in Yorkshire when things don't go our way

      As we say up here in Yorkshire when things don't go our way whey.

      TFTFY

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Coat

        Re: As we say up here in Yorkshire when things don't go our way

        Damn. That never oc-curd to me.

        1. DavCrav Silver badge

          Re: As we say up here in Yorkshire when things don't go our way

          I camembert these puns any more.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Most Dutch cheeses I've ever had are bloody awful and taste like a tyre, unfortunately for them Goodyear is already taken.

    Horrible rubbery processed stuff, give me a Stilton or Roquefort any day.

    Missed a trick their Andrew, NOT blessed are the cheesemakers.

    1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

      Given that the product in this case was a cream-cheese, I'd hope that it isn't rubbery...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        >cream-cheese

        Even worse, tastes like wall paper paste, Polycell also taken.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        >Given that the product in this case was a cream-cheese, I'd hope that it isn't rubbery...

        Let me tell you about latex...

        1. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

          Let me tell you about latex...

          Technically, latex is a sol (solid marticles in a liquid medium), whereas cream cheese is an emulsion (liquid-in-liquid). Both are colloids, but then again, so is smoke.

          Latex can cross-link to become rubbery, in which case it forms a gel (liquid in solid). If your cream cheese does this, I'd suggest it's time to throw it out. Although technically soft and medium-hard cheeses are probably gels as well to some degree or another.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Recommended light reading "Universal Foam" by Sidney Perkowitz. Run the gamut from aerogel to cappuccino.

    2. chivo243 Silver badge
      Trollface

      @AC

      As a resident of NL, I can safely say, the Dutch don't share their good cheeses with outsiders...

      1. tmTM

        Re: As a resident of NL

        Given the crap you do share perhaps it's best you don't offer the rest.

    3. Wyrdness

      As someone who's spent a lot of time in the Netherlands, they take their cheese very seriously there. The choice and quality of the cheeses there tends to exceed what you generally find in Britain. If you lived abroad and your only experience of British cheese was mild cheddar, you might conclude that our cheese is rubbish too.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "If you lived abroad and your only experience of British cheese was mild cheddar, [...]"

        The "Magasin Anglais" in Luxembourg in the 1980s sold some English foods for which ex-pat EEC workers had a craving. The popular cheese was Cheddar. However - the frozen Mother's Pride white sliced bread was only bought by Americans. The Brits sensibly bought the daily fresh bread from a boulangerie.

      2. Nick Kew Silver badge

        @Wyrdness - nonsense. We in Blighty have many wonderful cheeses: see for instance our superb local cheese shop.

        And at the bottom end, I'd take a cheapo Sainsburys or Lidl cheddar over any of the Dutch cheeses sold in Blighty any day. Or for an outside perspective, I'd take the cheddar I could get when I lived in Germany over the Dutch cheeses available there, too.

        (n.b. Happy to accept that good Dutch cheeses exist and that some of you have experienced them. A story like German wine? They have some nice stuff, but you wouldn't think it based on the crap they export to us).

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          They (the Jormans) have some nice stuff, but you wouldn't think it based on the crap they export to us.

          Well, that's largely true for most of the wine that the UK imports! But German wine has significantly improved from the days of Blue Nun and Black Tower (neither of which I've ever seen here). Like many European winemakers, they benefitted enormously from the expertise and techniques that the Australians brought to the business. The sparkling wines from my vintner have bee given the thumbs up by all my sister-in-laws.

    4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Like many things, the Dutch have optimised their production processes for an international market that has no taste. This is as true for their water masquerading as beer (Heineken) as it is for the equally ubiquitous and equally bland Gouda. But they can and do and make and mature proper cheeses.

      As a kid we had to suffer red balls of Edam because my mum basically doesn't like cheese. Strange thing is I've never seen these abominations in any of the provinces and certainly not in Edam itself, which is a lovely little cheese.

      Given a choice I prefer a strong, crumbly Cheddar or a French, non-dairy (sheep, goats) cheese but my local farmer's market does a nice line in Dutch-style cheeses with fenugreek or mustard seeds.

      However, elsewhere I noticed there's been another legal campaign against the roquefort mould that gives us our lovely Stilton.

      1. Captain Hogwash
        Headmaster

        Re: non-dairy (sheep, goats) cheese

        See https://www.dictionary.com/browse/dairy

      2. Fungus Bob Silver badge

        Re: @Charlie Clark

        "we had to suffer red balls"

        Your comment would be much more entertaining if this was all you wrote...

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        The red balls of edamer can be greatly improved by storing them in a cool place for one year. The taste is like a totally different cheese.

    5. macjules Silver badge

      Perhaps you should try their cheeses actually in the Netherlands, and not the awful English concoctions that are sold here under the pretence of being Dutch cheeses. Give it a try, you might even that that it tastes Gouda :)

      1. Marco van de Voort

        Yes, try real Dutch cheese, start with Limburger cheese!

        1. Commswonk Silver badge

          Yes, try real Dutch cheese, start with Limburger cheese!

          Or perhaps finish with it. Seeing nobody else has posted this link I will:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3KBuQHHKx0

    6. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

      Re: Most Dutch cheeses I've ever had are bloody awful and taste like a tyre

      I would tread caerphilly with that opinion, if I were you.

      1. TRT Silver badge

        Re: Most Dutch cheeses I've ever had are bloody awful and taste like a tyre

        If it’s Gouda nuff for the Dutch it’s Gouda nuff for me

  3. Ima Ballsy
    Facepalm

    Well ...

    Seems this is a bit cheesy at best, but something sure smells fishy after all ...

  4. Whitter
    Headmaster

    "must be capable of being seen and heard"

    Surely that should be an "or" in there?

    Legal advice eh?!

    1. TRT Silver badge

      Re: "must be capable of being seen and heard"

      Oh, I see... So synesthesia isn't real then? I call that an unconscious bias against the differently abled.

      1. Anonymous Coward
  5. EveryTime Silver badge

    I followed the link to the story about Aldi "rip off" products.

    What a load of.. hand-wringing. Yes, in a sense they are knock-off products. But no one would legitimately be confused with the originals. Side by side you know you are buying a product modeled after the original. The only confusion might be which is the original, but that isn't what trademark is intended to protect.

    1. sabroni Silver badge

      re: Side by side you know you are buying a product modeled after the original.

      Aldi don't stock the things they copy so they're not "side by side".

      I'm not convinced what Aldi are doing is wrong mind, but when it's massive corporation vs small business my gut feel is to favour the small business.

    2. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

      @EveryTime

      It seems unfair for the Mail to single out Aldi for selling similar looking products, as all supemarkets have been doing it for decades. But then, it's rather obvious that if you are selling ketchup, you're probably going to have a tomato on the label, or in the more specific case, that chicken sausages might come in a packet that is a similar colour to a roast chicken. PR luvvies think they are clever creating a brand, when it's an obvious set of attributes plonked on a label.

      1. WylieCoyoteUK

        Every supermarket does it

        The large supermarkets often bring out "own brand" versions of new products, copying the product and packaging, but seldom the quality.

        They also often get sued for it when they make the mistake of imitating a big company's brand.

        1. GruntyMcPugh Silver badge

          Re: Every supermarket does it

          @WylieCoyoteUK

          The only case against a retailer I can recall was Poundland vs Toblerone, all of the other copycat cases seem to go unpunished. I guess this is because brands know suing a supermarket chain would be be suicide, as the chain would stop stocking all the brands wares, and the brand would lose a lot of revenue. In the Poundland case, I don't think the makers of Toblerone saw a downside there.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Every supermarket does it

            Pretty much, although if a supermarkets [Or other retailers] branding is too close to yours you generally fire off a complaint to trading standards or the ASA who'll suggest strongly that they change.

            Its a rarity for things to need to go further.

        2. nijam Silver badge

          Re: Every supermarket does it

          > The large supermarkets often bring out "own brand" versions of new products, copying the product and packaging, but seldom the quality.

          In my experience, own brands are usually quite easy to distinguish, but are by no means always inferior quality - surprisingly often they are are better.

  6. Bonzo_red

    There aren't many artisan products shown in that "roundup".

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "This ensures the law remains uncertain"

    I'm not sure I understand that bit - since now the matter has been settled at the highest EU court, isn't the result available to every courts all across the EU? Won't that lead to a more consistent application of laws, without the need to drag the case though each country's judicial system first?

    1. Saruman the White

      Re: "This ensures the law remains uncertain"

      The court has just expressed an opinion and provided advice. It is not legally binding as such, although the Dutch court will probably toe the line (it did ask the question in the first case).

      1. Andrew Orlowski (Written by Reg staff)

        Re: "This ensures the law remains uncertain"

        The decisions of the Court are very much legally binding - that's the point. The top tiers of the court are legally binding while the third tier, the CST (the Tribunal) is not.

        This might help: https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/ld201011/ldselect/ldeucom/128/12805.htm

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So, if I get this right..

    .. their arguments didn't pass the smell test?

    What? Someone had to say it. No reason to be cheesed off.

    (etc).

    Yes, yes, I know they're cheesy jokes (it's late here).

    (that's enough - ed)

  9. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge
    IT Angle

    On yer bike, CJEU tells Dutch dairy dealer

    Or, perhaps more appropriately: "Hard cheese."

    I disagree about being able to copyright taste.

    I can think of many examples of "bad taste" that have been copyrighted. Not going to mention any, as I don't wish to arbitrarily offend anyone here.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: On yer bike, CJEU tells Dutch dairy dealer

      I am arbitrarily offended by your lack of examples.

  10. Gerhard den Hollander

    Witte wieven

    Witte wieven translates to white women, not wise women. It’s actually a nickname/folktale referencing the fog from the canals that, when rising up across the meadows looks ( in the dark ) like white women climbing out of the canal coming to drag the weary walker in the canal.

    Many a walker in the 1800s who had fortified himself before a long cold walk would encounter these white women and depending on his level of fortification may have ended up in the drink.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Witte wieven

      Has political correctness creeped in to El Reg me asks? Can’t seem to attribute colour of skin or “whiteness” to anything out there in Lalaland anymore. It’s sadly taken as an offence instead of being seen as simply descriptive.

      Reminds me of how we renamed White Russia to become Belarus, the actual localised name of the country. Why did we do this? After all we still call it its neighbour Poland not Polska for example.

      Bela still means white and Rus still refers to Russia. Politically expedient but logically pointless because the country name has not changed.

  11. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    Cheese joke...

    What cheese do you use to hide a horse?

    Mascarpone.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019