New Zealanders are buying better quality cheeses as they explore different speciality cheese including locally-made takes on classics such as feta, halloumi and Parmesan.

Speciality cheese is the big winner with Nielsen Supermarket Sales MAT to 14 July 2019, showing speciality cheese has grown by 7.3% in value and volume compared to the corresponding time last year. The same data shows the total value of sales of cheese in NZ are up by 2.9% compared with the same time the previous year, with a value growth of 6.3% vs one year ago.

The figures were released by the New Zealand Specialist Cheesemakers Association (NZSCA). Each October the Association hosts NZ Cheese Month to celebrate the hard work and dedication of the country’s cheesemakers.

NZSCA Chair Neil Willman says the sales figures are clear proof that New Zealanders are embracing the local cheese industry and getting more adventurous in their tastes as they do so.

“It’s a reflection of the change to a more international style of eating. New Zealanders are wanting to explore different tastes and flavours and our cheesemakers are offering a broader range of cheeses to meet this demand.”

“As well as making the traditional cheddar we’ve grown up loving, NZSCA members are making speciality cheeses which haven’t been seen before in NZ such as; Mexican cheeses like Cajeta and Oaxaca, or Italian favourites such as mozzarella, ricotta and mascarpone and interestingly other Italian styles which are less familiar in New Zealand such as; Scamorza, Stracciatella and Stracchino.“

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