Recently, you may have seen social media posts and your cheese industry friends abuzz about “Cheese 2017,” if you have not been sure what it is they’re conversing about keep reading to find out more!
Cheese is a biannual festival held in Bra, Italy. Cheese is organized by Slow Food, which is an international organization that works to prevent the loss of local food culture and tradition amongst the landscape of fast and artificial foods around the world today. Slow Food began in 1986 in response to the proposed construction of a McDonald’s franchise in Rome and has grown into an international organization with divisions and projects in 160 countries.
Amongst these organizations and events is Slow Cheese, which was created in 2001 in collaboration with the Manifesto in Defense of Raw Milk Cheese, and the biannual festival Cheese, which began in 1997.
Cheese is a gathering of cheesemakers, affineurs, and other industry members as well as cheese enthusiasts! Portions of the celebration include conferences and presentations on a variety of topics in the international dairy industry, particularly in terms of traditional production methods. The focus of this year’s event is “The State of Raw Milk” as well as a focus on maintaining natural fermentation methods instead of industrial yeasts. At each festival, a country is highlighted during the festival, this year the United States has been chosen! Our program director, Carlos Yescas, will be presenting in one of the conferences: “Raw in the USA,” a conference discussing regulations in the United States on raw milk cheeses, as well as highlighting several well-known producers of raw milk cheese in the US.
We look forward to the dialogues on raw milk cheeses that are opened as a result of this year’s festival and the continued growth of the international cheese industry!
Daniel McElligott - Oldways Cheese Coalition Research Associate