Three-Day Value Added Dairy/Cheesemaking Workshop Offered

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Oswego County is proud to welcome Peter Dixon to Oswego County for a Value Added Dairy/Cheesemaking Workshop. Peter runs a successful dairy consulting business and has been a cheesemaker for over 20 years. Peter Dixon has an extensive background in cheesemaking, development and consulting. Since 1983 he has served as part owner for different farms making cheese, also as the cheesemaker and quality control manager at the Vermont Butter and Cheese Company, and he is currently the cheesemaker at Consider Bardwell Farm in Vermont. He has also been operating a dairy foods consulting business since 1996 and has served in this role as a consultant for Land O‘Lakes in their International Development Division in Macedonia and Albania and additionally to the USDA Marketing Assistance program in Armenia. Peter has also designed a cave for Cato Corners Farm and created new cheese recipes for many different farms.

The three-day hands-on workshop will give: “Participants the opportunity to learn about milk quality, ingredients used in cheesemaking, processes for making a variety of cheeses, salting and brining, techniques and requirements for aging cheese, and information for establishing a business as a farmstead or artisan cheesemaker that includes equipment, facilities. The heart of the workshop is the hands-on opportunity for participants to make a number of different cheeses themselves, and to learn by actually doing it.” The different cheeses that will be made include: Gouda, Havarti, Baby Swiss, an Alpine variety and Mozzarella.

The distress in the dairy industry makes this a timely workshop; farmers will have an opportunity to have hands-on experience with cheesemaking and discuss cheesemaking as a viable business option.

The Value Added Dairy/Cheesemaking Workshop would not be possible without the support of the Adirondack North Country Association, Byrne Dairy, Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative, Northeast Sustainable Agriculture and Research Education Organization and Pathfinder Bank.

The workshop will be held October 28, 29 and 30th, 2009 from 8:30 am to 5 pm each day at the Amboy 4-H Environmental Center in Williamstown, NY. The cost is $75/person (includes instruction fee, teaching materials/workbook and lunch each day). Participants need to bring one gallon of raw or pasteurized milk each day (cow or goat milk) for the actual cheesemaking. Registration is limited on a first-come first-serve basis. Pre-registration with payment is required to hold your space. If you are interested in participating in the cheesemaking workshop or have questions, please contact Karen Meyers at (315) 963-7286 ext. 201 or Valerie Walthert at (315) 963-7286 ext. 203 or visit our website at www.cce.cornell.edu/oswego.