PROVIDENCE, R.I., – Helping elevate artisanal cheese producers from family farms across the country, United Natural Foods, Inc. (NYSE: UNFI), the largest publicly-traded grocery wholesaler and distributor in the U.S., announced today it has doubled the size of its American Artisan Cheese and Specialty Program. Launched in 2020 to give customers access to unique craft cheeses sourced from all over the nation, the program has been met with such enthusiasm, UNFI has expanded it to a second warehouse to serve customers in the Pacific Northwest.
UNFI customers utilizing the program can order from a premier group of highly curated producers from each region across the country such as Jasper Hill Farm of VT, Green Dirt Farms of MO, Tulip Tree Creamery of IN, and Cowgirl Creamery of CA. Handled with exceptional attention, the majority of products are flown directly from each farm though a partnership with Southwest Airlines, personally picked up at the airport, and delivered to each retailer, ensuring they’re getting the freshest possible product. After the expansion to the second warehouse, UNFI’s American Artisan Cheese program now serves more than 200 retailers across six states, doubling the program’s size since its launch in fall of 2020.
“Our team of certified cheese professionals took their passion for craft on the road across the country to discover some of the best cheeses from small, family run farms. Our American Artisan Cheese and Specialty Program gives UNFI customers a truly distinct category offering to make their cheese cases stand out,” said Rebekah Baker Director of Cheese & Specialty at UNFI. “We’re not only proud of the quality of producers in our program and the support we’re able to give to elevating local farms, but also by the unique way that we’re able to deliver on freshness.”
Cheers for Cheese
UNFI is also extending its American cheese category expertise with support for the annual American Cheese Society (ACS) Judging & Competition, the largest event of its kind for American-made cheeses. With judging taking place on May 19-20 at the Huntington Bank Stadium at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis campus, the competition will highlight top American cheesemakers for both quality cheesemaking and their commitment to food safety. A UNFI Cheese Specialist will participate as a judge this year, and the company will also donate refrigerated trailers to store over 6,000 lbs. of cheese for the event.
“Partnering with true category experts from UNFI and to have their support is what makes this event possible,” said Tara Holmes, ACS Executive Director. “We’re thrilled to have Cheese Specialist Carlos Souffront, of UNFI’s Tony’s Fine Foods on board with us again for his seventh year of judging.”
To learn more, visit https://www.unfifresh.com/tonys
UNFI is North America’s premier food wholesaler delivering the widest variety of products to customer locations throughout North America including natural product superstores, independent retailers, conventional supermarket chains, ecommerce retailers, and food service customers. By providing this deeper ‘full-store’ selection and compelling brands for every aisle, UNFI is uniquely positioned to deliver great food, more choices, and fresh thinking to customers everywhere. Today, UNFI is the largest publicly-traded grocery distributor in America. To learn more about how UNFI is Fueling the Future of Food, visit www.unfi.com.