It takes a lot of courage to do cheese respecting nature: for example a do not use industrial feed feeding the cattle with fresh grazing grasses only, a avoid the use of chemical enzymes or pasteurized milk that facilitate and shorten the production process, or any other artificial treatment that would also make storage easier. In a word: tradition. Because this is what it is, and it is a matter of choices: the not easy choice of those who follow ancient production methods, sometimes millenary, which respect animals and the environment, and which give truly unique products.
Like the ones you find in the gallery above: the cheeses of the cheesemakers to which Slow Food has just awarded «the prizes of the Dairy Resistance “, the event in the event of Cheese, the biennial event that goes on until 20 September in Bra dedicated to raw milk cheeses (ie unpasteurized) and “natural” cheeses (without enzymes).
The winners are the artisans they have removed the chemistry e they practice fair and respectful breeding of animals, great protagonists of this year’s edition of Cheese. They are producers who, despite the comforts offered by modern food technologies, continue to make cheeses with respect naturalness, history, and their therefore original taste. All this paying the consequences in terms of time, effort, sometimes even isolation given that the territories that make some productions so special are not always easy to reach (or to experience).
For the first time, due to the pandemic, awarded only to European cheesemakers, the prizes are six: toelderly cheesemaker point of reference and guardian of an ancient knowledge transmitted to the new generations, al young shepherd and cheesemaker who has chosen to live in the mountains and continue to produce and breed in the wake of tradition, al foreign manufacturer – a migrant – who practices dairy art in Italy, to the breeder who worked to safeguard an indigenous breed at risk of extinction, all‘activist which has waged important battles for the values of dairy resistance.
Then, there is a special prize, that this year Slow Food has decided to name a That’s why Gudeta: farmer and producer murdered in Trentino in 2020. She herself had won the Dairy Resistance Award for her commitment to protecting tradition: in Val di Gresta she raised the spotted mochena goat at risk of extinction and produced cheeses. Her death still shakes us and, for her commitment and example, Slow Food has decided that from now on it will confer an award named after her on a woman. To discover this year’s winners and their cheeses, browse the gallery above
Photo cover Roberto Giomi