Drought forces France to stop making 2,000-year-old cheese


French farmers said goodbye to this cheese.

Production of Salers cheese has been halted in France due to prolonged summer drought, The Guardian reported.

The prolonged dry spell, combined with unprecedented heat waves in Europe this summer, means there is not enough grass to feed the cows whose millet is used to create the traditional delicacy.

Salers is a semi-hard, unpasteurized cow’s cheese made in the central French region of the same name for 2,000 years. It bears France’s AOC seal of approval, meaning it’s unique to this small region.

France’s reputedly strict regulations stipulate that Salers must only come from the milk of local cows who feed on at least 75% grass from the mountain pastures in summer.

Most of the 76 farmers whose milk is used in the production of Salers lament that their once green pastures are now dry and yellow due to lack of water.

“There is nothing left to eat,” farmer Laurent Roux told France Bleu radio. “The ground is so dry that in places it looks like ash. It’s dust.

Salers cheese is considered a delicacy with strict quality standards.
THIERRY ZOCCOLAN/AFP via Getty Images

It is the first time in history that cheese production has been stopped.

New York Post

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