South Yorkshire sweet firm tastes victory over Leeds company in Yorkshire Mixture confectionery row
A South Yorkshire confectionery firm has tasted sweet success after seeing off the challenge of a Leeds company in a row over the iconic Yorkshire Mixture boiled sweets.
South Yorkshire based Maxons and West Yorkshire based Joseph Dobson went head to head in the courts for the rights to the Yorkshire Mixture name - the much-loved local sweet variety bag which fruit and mint humbugs, pear drops and fruit rock.
And Sheffield's Maxons, which has been producing the sweets for more than 75 years, has been given the go-ahead to continue producing the sweets under the Yorkshire Mixture brand - after Dobson's tried to claim exclusive rights to use the name.
Bosses at the company say the end of more than 18 months of legal wranglings have saved the firm from extinction.
“It is a big relief to us," said Richard Pitchfork, joint managing director or Maxons.
“Yorkshire Mixture is one of our biggest sellers and a product we are renowned for and proud of.
"It’s a product that is very close to our hearts as a family and to the people of Sheffield.
"We have maintained that at its core Yorkshire Mixture is simply a mixture of quality boiled sweets made in Yorkshire and it’s the company name that indicates what that mixture is and the true quality of it."
Maxons scored victory at the UK and European Intellectual Property Offices and were granted the go-ahead to continue using the name Yorkshire Mixture on their packs of confectionery.
Joseph Dobson of Elland had put in trade mark applications in the UK and Europe, arguing that they should be the sole makers and custodians of the name Yorkshire Mixture.
As a result each and every company can use the terms for their own version of the product.
"It is nice to see the UK and EU Intellectual Property Office agreeing with us," added Mr Pitchfork.
Maxons has been making its Yorkshire Mixture with a combination of fruit and mint humbugs, fruit fish, pear drops and fruit rock since the 1930s with the firm - which also makes Jesmona sweets - founded in 1927.
The dispute started when Maxons released 250g Yorkshire Mixture 250g packs in Sheffield Pop Art bags designed by local artist Luke Prest.
Added Mr Pitchfork: “It was seemingly straight after we launched our new packaging that their application was submitted and this whole saga began.
"We have been awaiting the decision to be able to really launch the branding properly.
"We now have some fantastic listings with the likes of Boyes, TJ Hughes, Asda, Tesco, the Range, Co-op and Morrisons to name a few thanks to the quality of not only the product but the packaging too. We now look forward to moving on with growing the business without this worry.”
Maxons were also awarded the trade mark for Maxons Yorkshire Mixture in the process which preserves their right to continue to make the product in the future under the name.