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Pearl Valley cheese earns awards

| March 8, 2024

Pearl Valley Cheese, a fourth-generation, family-owned cheesemaker located in eastern Ohio, nestled in the rolling hills of Coshocton County, near the Amish Country attractions, is honored to announce its gold and silver medal awards at the prestigious 2024 World Championship Cheese Contest.

The World Contest has been hosted by the Wisconsin Cheesemakers Association biennially since 1957.

This year, more than 400 dairy manufacturers from 25 countries and 32 American states, submitted over 3,300 entries in 85 different judging classes to vie for the title of World Champion. Pearl Valley won both Gold and Silver medals in the Swiss Cheese category. An international panel of expert dairy judges evaluated the entries based on appearance, texture, consistency, eye formation, and of course, flavor.

“This contest is comparable to the Olympics of the world’s cheese industry, and coming home with medals from this contest is the highest possible award that cheesemakers can lay claim to,” said Pearl Valley President Chuck Ellis. “The fourth generation of our family, David Burch, Kurt Ellis, and Thomas Ellis are managing the staff and manufacturing process at this juncture. The family believes the Lord has blessed us with an exceptional team of employees and milk producers who are committed to quality year-round,” Chuck said. “Our number one goal is to supply our wholesale and retail customers consistently with the best quality cheese available in the marketplace.”

Pearl Valley is still located in the tiny northeast corner of Coshocton County known as Pearl where Ernest and Gertrude Stalder began making cheese in a single copper kettle in 1928. The family’s second generation of cheesemakers was led by John and Grace Stalder, who remain a strong presence, led the company from the 1960s to the 1990s. In the 1990s, John and Grace’s son-in-law and daughter, Chuck and Sally Ellis along, with many other sibling family members grew the company into the award- winning entity that it has become known for.

Chuck said, “We are thankful for the generations who came before us and cannot overstate the role that the dairy farmers and cheesemaking staff played in this award. This awesome group of people work together every day for the benefit of all the cheese lovers who have been loyal to our brand for nearly 100 years.”  This year’s awards are the latest in a long history of awards at state, national, and international cheese contests that are prominently displayed around the facility.

More details of the 2024 World Cheese Contest can be found at www.worldchampioncheese.org.

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Article contributed to The Beacon.

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