SOURCE: Oregon Dairy Products Commission

July 27, 2006 19:59 ET

Oregon Artisan Cheesemakers Gain National Recognition at American Cheese Society Annual Conference Competition

Among Winners, Oregon Cow's Milk Cheeses Win Six Awards in Growing Specialty, Farmstead, and Artisan Cheese Industry

PORTLAND, OR -- (MARKET WIRE) -- July 27, 2006 -- Oregon artisan cheesemakers placed among the top honors awarded during the American Cheese Society's 2006 Annual Cheese Competition held July 19-22 in Portland, Oregon. Oregon cow's milk cheeses won two first-place awards, three second-place awards, and one third-place award in a record field of 941 entries from 157 processors in the U.S. and Canada.

The competition is one of the more unique events in the United States as it recognizes only the highest quality cheeses based on both aesthetic (flavor, aroma, and texture) and technical accomplishments. Some 274 ribbons were awarded for 22 categories and 91 subcategories of cheese varieties.

Oregon cow's milk cheese winners included Willamette Valley Cheese Company, Salem, which placed first for its Cumin Gouda in Flavored Farmstead Cheeses and Queso Fresco in Hispanic & Portuguese Style Cheeses. The company also garnered second for its Farmstead Gouda in American Made/International Style and Wine Pomace Gouda in Marinated Cheeses, and third for Perrydale in the American Originals category. Rogue Creamery of Central Point placed second with its Chipotle Cheddar in the Flavored Cheddars category.

"Statewide, we've had a sharp increase in interest for farmstead and artisan-style cheeses from both aspiring cheesemakers and the public," said Nick Furman, executive director of the Oregon Dairy Products Commission. "The American Cheese Society awards are yet a further nod to Oregon's growing contribution to that movement."

Oregon's increased involvement in artisan cheese development also includes the recent formation of the Oregon Cheese Guild (including cow, goat, and sheep's milk cheeses), and programs offered by both Oregon State University Extension Service and the Oregon Department of Agriculture's Food Innovation Center.

Additional information about the American Cheese Society and its competition can be viewed at

About Dairy Farmers of Oregon

Dairy Farmers of Oregon is the dba of the Oregon Dairy Products Commission. The Commission works on behalf of 350 dairy farm families who, with the help of 120,000 dairy cows and 20 Oregon dairy processors, provide award-winning cheeses, milk, butter, and an extensive line of premium ice cream, sour cream and yogurt. Milk is the official state beverage of Oregon, and Oregon milk is recognized nationwide as a leader in the United States for milk quality. The Oregon dairy industry is a community-conscious, caring business that contributes more than $1 billion to Oregon's economic well being each year. Oregon dairymen and women care about their cows, their communities, and the land, air and water of Oregon.

Contact Information

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