A COFFEE entrepreneur is looking to bring new meaning to the phrase Glasgow Kiss after applying to incorporate it in the branding of one of his products.

Stephen Meek, who runs coffee roasting business The Steamie, has applied to trademark the name in three categories – clothing, coffee and alcoholic drinks - with the hope that it will go on to become one of his firm’s flagship brands.

He said that although the phrase has connotations of Glasgow’s violent past, he hopes to change its meaning into something more romantic.

“The idea is to name one of our coffees Glasgow Kiss and in actual fact it will be one of our speciality coffees,” he said.

“Glasgow is a very cosmopolitan city and the people who work for us have no understanding of the history of the term.

“We’ve done a fair bit of market research and we felt it was a good enough name for us to go down the romantic line.

“Whether Glasgow kiss is known for the right reasons or the wrong reasons we are not in any way advocating violence – we are advocating coffee.

“Coffee is for all of us and it brings communities together. If we can change the image [of what a Glasgow kiss is] then that’s a good thing.”

This is not the first time a local businessman has sought to incorporate the words Glasgow kiss into a consumer product, with lawyer Philip Hannay, an intellectual property specialist at Cloch Solicitors, successfully trademarking the words for use on clothing and chocolates in 2007.

Having previously sold lip-shaped, chilli-filled chocolates called Glasgow Kiss, Mr Hannay said his aim is to restart that line in the future. While his trade mark expired in December last year, Mr Hannay’s plan is to renew it for another 10 years.

He said that he and Mr Meek have a co-existence agreement, meaning he will not be opposing the latter’s application to the UK Intellectual Property Office.

“There’s an appetite for me to do it [start selling chocolates again] but I have got a day job,” Mr Hannay said. “That’s why with Mr Meek it’s better just teaming up together.”

Mr Meek founded The Steamie, which is named after a play by Tony Roper, four years ago. In addition to a coffee shop in Glasgow’s fashionable Finnieston district he runs a roastery that has just moved into the SWG3 warehouse in the West End.

He said the aim of using a distinctive brand like Glasgow Kiss is to raise the profile of the business and generate more sales in the wholesale arm.

“It’s a well-known term so we’re trying to get a bit of traction with that – being found on the internet is critical,” Mr Meek said.

“The plan is to generate a bit more wholesale with the Glasgow Kiss branding.

“From an ethical point of view what we are trying to do is promote our coffee and if that means we can sell more coffee then we can give more money to the farmers [who supply the coffee].”

Although the business has applied to trademark the name in three separate categories, the initial plan is to use it only for coffee.

Last year Mr Meek trademarked the name The Steamie for use with coffee and tea only. He also registered a visual mark that shows the image of a boy pegged to a washing line.