Consumers in general and Californians in particular are showing new and enthusiastic interest in their food – where it comes from, who makes it, and how it is made. Farmers have responded with a renewed devotion to agricultural products that fill not just supermarket produce aisles, but also a growing number of niche demands – while maintaining a food supply that is as safe and delicious as always.
Our state’s artisan cheese makers exemplify this growing focus on food and the processes and particulars of its production. Recognizing the popularity of this market, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), the California Dairy Research Foundation, Cal Poly and contributors from the dairy industry have pooled their resources and knowledge to tailor specific, effective food safety strategies for the artisan cheese maker. These strategies are presented in workshops November 15 in Rohnert Park and November 16 in Visalia that would benefit any artisan cheese makers who want to incorporate the latest food safety science into their operations.
The workshops represent a proactive collaboration among industry, government and academia to help our food producers find the nexus of food safety and agricultural diversity. A wide variety of safe cheeses on our store shelves is good for everyone! I encourage cheese makers to take advantage of this opportunity, and I thank the dairy industry for its continuing dedication to providing safe, wholesome and nutritious products.