How did the sudden closure of restaurants in New York City affect artisan and farmstead cheese producers in Vermont? In a word, poorly. But the loss of that major market and others has led to the creation of a new online resource, designed by the Vermont Cheese Council, to connect local cheesemakers to consumers in Vermont and beyond.
Vermont’s cheese industry — valued at $650 million, according to the council — is experiencing significant impacts from the COVID-19 crisis. One of the largest sales channels for the state’s cheese serves restaurants and institutions, both within Vermont and in urban markets throughout the Northeast.
“Restaurant closures in the New York City area resulted in a simultaneous 50 percent drop in sales for Vermont’s artisan cheesemakers,” Marty Mundy, executive director of the Vermont Cheese Council, told Seven Days. Mundy added that the drop in sales has since “grown to be over 50 percent for a lot of cheesemakers.”
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