Ruminations and recipes from a small kitchen in a big city.

3.5.06

Meltdown: cheesemakers face off.

Artisan cheesemakers want more freedom to make raw-milk cheeses but the main industry body opposes deregulation. It's a long article but worth the read, if only for the hilarious quotes.

Chef Guillaume Brahimi was reported to have said he "would not use Australian cheese to trap a rat". Ouch.

Stung, the Australian Specialist Cheesemakers' Association hit back. President David Brown opposes deregulation along with the importation of raw milk cheeses, asserting without any trace of tongue-in-cheek that the French method of manufacturing Roquefort is unhygienic because it is "matured in caves". Stop the press!

Small-scale cheesemaker Ann-Marie Monda defends the artisans: "Our dairy more than meets the criteria for handling raw-milk cheese and we have control over our herd ... people really want good quality cheese. They want texture and the flavours that nature brings: the weather, the wind and the goats."

What? Cheese comes from goats? Someone tell David Brown.

3 comments:

Kitchen Queen said...

Wow. Sorry to see that you have food idiots there too. How do these food bureaucrats think people survived before pasteurization was discovered?

The raw milk debate is a big issue here in Washington state. But at least you have a newspaper that will print a long article that gets into the issues involved. Mostly we get soundbite news (if you can call it that).

kitchen hand said...

Bureaucrats drive me nuts, Kitchen Queen. It's good to see them skewered (figuratively) in the papers by their own words.

neil said...

My favourite Aussie cheese at the moment is Tarago River's Strzlecki Blue, which no Australian can really pronounce. I think Brahimi is right about Pyengana Cheddar, it used to be brilliant but seems to have lost the flavours that set it apart, and he is also right about not using Australian cheese to trap a rat; a nice piece of bacon always works for me ;-P