The World Cheese Awards is the largest annual cheese-only event, receiving over 4,000 entries from cheesemakers and producers from across the world each year. Last year’s record-breaking event brought together cheeses representing 42 different nations and 900 cheesemakers from around the world.
As announced by the Guild of Fine Food, entries for the World Cheese Awards 2023 are open until 8 September, with entries traveling to Norway by boat, truck, train, and plane via consolidation points around the world.
The event is part of the Oste V-M cheese festival at Trondheim Spektrum, Norway, on Friday 27th of October 2023 and will be supported by HANEN, the national organisation for rural tourism and farm produce in Norway. Taking place from 27th-28th of October, Oste V-M will see 4,000 food and cheese-lovers come together for cheese tastings, family activities and a trade conference. The Guild of Fine Food will also be organising a World Cheese Market around the judging arena on 27th and 28th of October and special tasting tours around the World Cheese Awards arena on Saturday 28th of October.
A truly global event, the World Cheese Awards brings together cheesemakers, retailers, buyers, consumers, media, and food experts, to honour the best cheeses from across the globe and celebrate the best in cheesemaking. It will be attended by 250 judges from more than 38 different countries.
“At this year’s event we will witness the innovation and creativity that has emerged within our World Cheese Awards community over the past year,” John Farrand, managing director of the Guild of Fine Food, organisers of the competition, said. “We look forward to collaborating with you all in the vibrant city of Trondheim to make this remarkable tribute to cheese and cheesemakers from across the globe”.
“We are delighted to have the opportunity to showcase Norway’s remarkable food and beverage culture by hosting the World Cheese Awards 2023,” Bernt Bucher Johannessen, managing director of HANEN commented. “We eagerly anticipate welcoming the global cheese and dairy community to Norway and are optimistic that some of our very own cheesemakers will participate.”
Cheesemakers wanting to compete should head to www.gff.co.uk/wca to enter. Global consolidation points have been organised by the Guild of Fine Food, to receive entries from cheesemakers and transport them to the judging venue, under controlled conditions. This makes it easier for entrants, especially smaller producers, to send their cheeses internationally, as the consolidation points will assist with export paperwork and provide a convenient local point for cheesemakers to deliver their cheese.
The consolidation points are totally unique to the World Cheese Awards and no other competition has such a far-reaching network offering safe and subsidised delivery for entries.
In the largest global cheese-only event, cheese producers strive to earn recognition through Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Super Gold awards, as well as coveted country and cheese-specific trophies. Working in teams of two or three, the judges identify any cheeses worthy of a gold, silver, or bronze award. They look at the rind and the body of the cheese, its colour, texture, consistency and, most importantly, its taste. Each team then nominates one exceptional cheese as the Super Gold from their table.
These exceptional cheeses are identified as the best in the world and go on to be judged a second time by a Super Jury made up of 16 internationally recognised experts, who each select one cheese to champion in the final round of judging. The Super Jury, coming together to represent all four corners of the globe, then debate the final cheeses in front of a live consumer and trade audience, before choosing the World Champion Cheese live on WCA TV, with cheese lovers and enthusiasts from around the globe tuning in to watch the event unfold.
In addition to the Bronze, Silver, Gold and Super Gold prizes, there are country and cheese specific trophies.