Swiss Gruyere named best-of-show at World Championship

And the winner is . . . Gruyere AOC from Switzerland!

The two largest Canadian cheese producers won all five of Canada’s gold medals in the 2010 World Championship Cheese Contest held in Madison, Wisconsin.

Saputo Dairy Products Canada won three golds while Agropur Cooperative garnered a pair.

Twenty countries entered 2,318 cheeses in the competition. The U.S. swept the lion’s share of gold medals. Canada and the Netherlands tied for second with five golds apiece. Best-of-show honors went to a Gruyere made by Fromagerie de La Brévine in Switzerland.

The Canadian cheeses awarded golds are:

Rindless Swiss-style cheese – La Fromagerie, Saputo Dairy Products Canada of Saint-Laurent, Quebec. The Cogruet scored 99.15 out of a possible 100 points.

Camembert and other surface-ripened cheeses – La Maison Alexis de Portneuf, Saputo Dairy Products Canada, Saint-Laurent, Quebec. The Saint-Honore scored 98.95.

Smear-ripened soft cheese – La Maison Alexis de Portneuf, Saputo Dairy Products Canada won again for it’s Le Sauvagine scoring 99.45.

Cheddar, Mild – Agropur Cooperative of Bon-Conseil, Quebec. Its cheddar scored a 99.45.

Cheddar, Sharp – Agropur Cooperative, Bon-Conseil, Quebec. An older cheddar scored 99.5.

Judges at work at the Worlds.

Saputo Dairy Products Canada was founded in 1954 in Montreal by an immigrant Italian family headed by cheesemaker Giuseppe Saputo. It processes 6 billion litres of milk annually in 46 plants in Canada, the U.S., Argentina, Germany and the United Kingdom, with 26 plants in Canada. Saputo products are sold in more than 40 countries under brand names such as Saputo, Alexis de Portneuf, Armstrong, Baxter, Dairyland, Danscorella, De Lucia, Dragone, DuVillage 1860, Frigo Cheese Heads, Kingsey, La Paulina, Neilson, Nutrilait, Ricrem, Stella, Treasure Cave, HOP&GO!, Rondeau and Vachon.

Founded in Quebec in 1938, Agropur Cooperative has 3,533 members and 5,225 employees at 27 plants and distribution centres and offices across Canada, the U.S. and Argentina. It processes 3.1 billion litres of milk on an annualized basis and offers products such as Québon, Oka, Sealtest, Natrel, Island Farms, Yoplait, La Lacteo, Trega and Schroeder.