Cheese - Culture

How can you govern a country that has over 300 varieties of cheese?

Charles de Gaulle

Facts & figures about cheese

300: the approximate number of cheese varieties in France.
24: the average number of kilos of cheese each French person eats in a year.
2000 B.C.: the first recorded varieties of cheese in Mesopotamia and India.

Cheese in a traditional French meal

In a traditional French meal, cheese is served after the main course and before the dessert, often with bread and red wine. Cheese can also be eaten hot in dishes like raclette or fondue.

The different varieties of cheese

There is a huge diversity of cheese varieties depending on:
  • the type of milk (cow's, ewe's, goat's),
  • the production method.
Each region in France has its own cheese varieties.
Emmental (from Switzerland) and Camembert (from Normandy) are the two most popular cheese varieties in France.
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Did you know?

In the Middle Ages, monks invented a large number of cheese recipes in their monasteries.

Records point to goat's cheese being the oldest variety of cheese. It was brought to France by Arab migrants.

And elsewhere?

Is Switzerland the real country of cheese?
450 varieties of cheese are reportedly produced in Switzerland - even more than in France!

Worldwide, English Cheddar is the most commonly consumed variety of cheese.