Cheese at the End of the 20th Century : Vermont Artisan Cheese

This document is a brochure from the Vermont Department of Agriculture. The inside of the brochure provides background as to what some of the families who made cheese in Vermont did. It explains how cheese making moved out of peoples' homes and into the factories. It also provides recipes that include cheese as an ingredient and names and information for many of the well-known cheese companies in Vermont.  This article illustrates the importance of cheese in Vermont through its brief history of it, showing how it helped Vermont become the nation's largest cheese producer for a period of time.  The list of creameries and the shear number of people producing cheese in the state demonstrates how much Vermonters like their cheese.

This article speaks about Allison Reisner and Bob Reese, local Vermont cheese makers, who use goat’s milk and make soft cheese as opposed to the norm for Vermont cheese makers, which is the making of cheddar cheese. The small operation is a good demonstration of the way that Vermont’s artisan cheese market is surviving. This couple experiments with and produces exciting new cheeses and products, in contrast to what is available from the larger factory operations. This shows how the Artisan cheese market is still available, and demonstrates the creativity of the cheese makers in producing quality cheeses.  

Scott Fletcher, 47, has worked at the Grafton Village Cheese Co since 1967, and still oversees the cheese production. He takes great satisfaction producing high-quality, small-batch cheeses. Details of the process are described in this article.  While Fletcher never says the word "Artisan", what he describes in the article about how his cheese is made is essentially artisan.  He talks about how other, larger companies produce more in a day than they do in a week, but  he says they never "touch" the cheese, only press buttons and watch things happen.  This preservation of traditional techniques while competing against more modern, industrial rivals is what Vermont artisan cheese is all about.