A CAMPAIGN is being launched to prevent Cheshire Cheese being consigned to the history books.
Enthusiasts preparing this year’s Cheshire County Show want to turn around the fortunes of the once-favourite cheese in the face of a stark fall in production which has seen the number of producers go from more than 200 before the Second World War to just six.
Two cheesemakers have halted production in the last three years alone, something which David Williams, chief steward in the cheese section of the Cheshire Show, says illustrates how dire the future looks unless something is done.
“In 1960, more than 40,000 tonnes of Cheshire Cheese was produced in the UK every year,” said David.
“It is now about just 7,000 tonnes.
“Cheshire Cheese’s heritage dates back to Roman times and it is also mentioned in the Domesday Book.
“It is a famous part of the county’s heritage and I think it is really important that we don’t let production of this great cheese disappear.”
Carole Faulkner of The Cheese Shop, Northgate Street, Chester is thrilled that something is being done about the decline and places the blame firmly with supermarkets.
“Real Cheshire Cheese tastes completely different to the bland offering that sits on supermarket shelves,” she said.
“We should get a high-profile chef behind the cause and get Cheshire Cheese protected by European law before it is too late.”
Chester Food and Drink Festival chairman Jane Casson agreed, and added: “It is so important to keep traditional cheese-making methods alive and to maintain the integrity of proper Cheshire Cheese.
“Getting celebrity endorsement or even applying for protection under EU law would help.”