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Food for Thought is an ongoing column-with-a-conscience that focuses on exciting new discoveries in the foodie world.
Most people love cheese. From generic American white smothered over our favorite comfort foods to handcrafted, small batch fares from places we cannot pronounce—nothing beats cheese. But what if we told you that cheese was in danger? What would that mean to you? What would you do about it? Why should you even care?
These are questions that the Cheese 2011 summit in Bra, Italy, hoped to answer. In its eighth year, Cheese 2011 aimed to shine light on the effects industrial farming has had, and continues to have, on the sustainability, quality and heritage preservation of cheese.
This year boasted 160,000 visitors over four days, representing 20 countries and a whopping 184 different cheeses (dominated this year by Eastern and Central Europe). One newcomer, Ciminà Caciocavallo, a raw milk cheese similar to Provolone, even sold all 600 kilograms in just two days. With co-organizer Slow Food International’s Carlo Petrini at the helm, a man who started his journey opposing the opening of a McDonald’s in Rome, success was inevitable.
We met with the Executive Director of Slow Food International, Paolo Di Croce, to discuss the event and the issues at hand.
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