A BY-PRODUCT of a successful fruit juice is playing an important part in Wallace and Gromit's favourite cheese.

American firm Ocean Spray produces gallons of cranberry juice each year but has no use for the skins.

So each month, tonnes of the skins arrive from the US at the Wensleydale Creamery at Hawes, North Yorkshire, to be used in one of its best-selling cheeses.

The skins form a prime component of Real Yorkshire Wensleydale Cheese with Cranberries.

The Wensleydale Creamery is now adding a number of products to its range of cheese with cranberries, including putting 30 per cent more of the superfruit in its products. Cranberries have many health benefits, including their nutrient content and antioxidant qualities.

Other combinations will include orange, papaya and mango.

The cheese including cranberries was launched in 1995 and has gone on to become one of the company's best sellers.

A spokesman for the creamery said: "We combine traditional production methods with the creation of new innovation and exciting recipes.

"The deal with Ocean Spray is a win-win situation for both businesses.

It has enabled the Wensleydale Creamery to develop a new brand of cheese bursting with natural fruit flavour by using part of Ocean Spray's cranberries.

"We originally sourced the cranberries through a distributor who we had a very close working relationship with.

"It was around a couple of years later when we formed the agreement with Ocean Spray to use the Made with Ocean Spray Cranberries' logo. There is only one other company in the world which is allowed to use this logo."

The company receives monthly deliveries from Ocean Spray, which is based in Massachusetts and has become the leading brand supplying 75 per cent of the world's cranberries.

The spokesman added: "We do dominate the market when it comes to Wensleydale and cranberry - it accounts for 30 per cent of our business."

Wensleydale cheese has been made in Wensleydale since 1150, when the Cistercian monks first settled in the dale, and established a monastery at Fors, four miles from Hawes.