Paul Oberjuerge header image 2

French Producers: Who Moved My Cheese?

January 9th, 2018 · 1 Comment · France

A very French story.

A crime involving cheese.

A heinous crime, then.

Nearly 700 wheels of soft, pungent Saint-Nectaire cheese, a favorite of King Louis XIV and worth about $12,000, were stolen in the dead of night from a village in the Auvergne, a mostly rural region of south-central France.

The heist is the latest to hit France’s huge cheese industry.

According to regional radio station France Blue, thieves took the Saint-Nectaire cheese while it was being aged on the Rue des Caves (Cellar Street) in the little town of Beaune de Froid.

Caroline Borrel, producer of the cheese made from cow’s milk (and highly prized by the Sun King during his long reign in the 17th century), said she did not hear a thing despite living close to the scene.

According to The Local, an English-language website focused on French news, a British research company concluded that the most stolen food product in the world is cheese — and as much as 4 percent of all cheese is stolen.

Three years ago, according to The Local, four tons of Comte cheese worth about $60,000, were stolen from a producer in the east of France.

Authorities suggest that the cheese is not intended for a monstrous party … but rather for sale to wholesalers, describing it as a “lucrative business opportunity for small-time criminals”.

Cheese is nearly a religion in France, where every formal meal features a cheese plate and where every region produces several cheeses prized by gastronomes.

That parochialism, however, also is an indication of the local/regional pride of the French, which generally seems to be more important than national concerns. Charles de Gaulle, former president of France, once allegedly said: “How can you govern a country which has 246 varieties of cheese?”

The burglary was the work of a team, according to Mme Borrel, who said it was too much work for one individual.

She told France Blue that she would install an alarm and a video surveillance system with the hope of frightening away anyone who is thinking of stealing her Saint-Nectaire.


1 response so far ↓

Leave a Comment