I just read this article from my hometown newspaper. If you do not have the time or inclination to read it, basically it points out in a recent international cheese competition, Wisconsin won 22 awards for their cheeses. California only won one. Why is this important? You see, a few years ago CA one-upped WI in becoming the largest producer of dairy products in the nation. Wisconsin thus lost its identity. More importantly, my home county and town lost its identity. Plymouth used to be known as the dairy capitol of the World! Now people ask why we have a giant cow in the center of town. We still have four cheese companies in Plymouth, but there used to be many, many more.
Most of my family earned its living making cheese. My grandpa worked about 50 at a cheese factory. My mother worked at Bordens when she was expecting me. My dad even did a small stint at the same place. He knocked out his two front teeth working at a cheese store as a teen. So in my family, cheese is not just a beloved food – it’s been a labor of love. (I speak as a fool)
Sargento is a noteworthy company, and a pillar in the city of Plymouth. The atmosphere in WI for business is not exceptionally friendly, yet Sargento has stuck around and made a go of things here. They are loyal to the community. I applaud that. And you know what? Their cheese is fantastic. You can buy it anywhere now, including Wal-Mart. They really are the pride of the state, and I am so glad that WI has regained the accolades it deserves. We may not produce the most dairy, but we still produce the best.