25 years before the current controversy Dr Edward William Coon featured in this spot


With the controversy over the COON name change by current owner Saputo, this Australian TVC from 1995 could be of interest, as it uses its creator, Dr Edward William Coon, in the spot and song.


COON is the Australian trademark of a cheddar cheese produced by the Warrnambool Cheese and Butter company (WCB). It was first launched in 1935 by Fred Walker. Coon cheese is named after its American creator, Edward William Coon (1871–1934) of Philadelphia, who in 1926 patented a method, subsequently known as the Cooning process, for fast maturation of cheese via high temperature and humidity.

LD&D Foods (who also held a stake in the company) were the previous operator of the brand, until May 2015 when it was sold back to WCB which is majority-owned by Canadian dairy company Saputo Inc.

The product name, which it shares with a racial slur, was defended by previous manufacturers Kraft and Dairy Farmers despite decades-long campaigns to change it, including through challenges to the Australian Human Rights Commission in 1999 and Advertising Standards Bureau in 2001 by activist Stephen Hagan. Amid Australian involvement in 2020 Black Lives Matter protests, on 24 July Saputo Inc. announced the name would be changed.

The 1995 spot was created by Leo Burnett Melbourne and directed by Greg Desmond. Editor: Mike Reed; DoP: David Lewis (Spider); Set Designer: Gert Shidor.