The Maine Cheese Guild believes that cheese of the highest quality can only be made with a thorough and regularly refreshed knowledge of food safety.
The Maine Cheese Guild promotes and sponsors regular opportunities to learn about best practices for cheese making. The Guild also believes that the best way for professional* cheese makers to guarantee the quality of their product is by being appropriately licensed by the Maine Department of Agriculture, as only licensed cheese makers are legally allowed to sell cheese to the public, and only licensed cheese makers receive feedback from the dairy regulatory unit through regular testing for contamination and facility inspections. This feedback is critical, together with on-going education, in maintaining the high quality of award-winning Maine cheese.
* professional = selling cheese to the public
Above you can see me telling Governor Baldacci about how Maine Cheese is such a great dairy success story!
Along with about thirty ag focused groups, I spent the morning of March 31 offering samples of Maine cheese (thanks to State of Maine Cheese Co., and Pineland Farms) to state house workers and legislators (in between sessions) and asking them if they’d like to know more about Maine cheese. Most of the did, and most of them very much liked the samples of the cheese.
For the legislators, I handed them one of the color Guild brochures and pointed out that when we printed the brochure two years ago there were 20 licensed cheese makers in Maine (as it states in the first paragraph of the brochure), but that currently there are 37 licensed cheese makers, which shows how many new folks are stepping up and putting more Maine milk to good use.