How is camembert made from unpasteurized milk

Dispute over Camembert in France"Vulgar soft paste without Taste"

French cooks are angry - an important cultural asset is in danger of disappearing: The original Camembert from Normandy is in danger, because the raw milk requirement will no longer apply in 2021. And without raw milk, a Camembert is not a Camembert. The milk doesn't matter, says a cheese refiner.

It's about the basic substance of Camembert de Normandie: milk. The term "Camembert from Normandy" is protected, as is Parmesan. Only if the cheese is made in Normandy can it be called that. And if it consists of raw milk, i.e. untreated milk straight from the cow. From 2021, however, this raw milk requirement will no longer apply. In the future, the Camembert can also be made from pasteurized milk. Milk producers and cheese makers have decided that.

The French love raw milk cheese

For many French people, only raw milk cheese is good cheese. In a French newspaper, top chefs, cheese makers and winemakers warned that the world-famous Camembert cultural asset would turn into a mediocre "vulgar soft paste" if the milk was pasteurized beforehand.

"The raw milk that comes fresh from the udder naturally has the most vitamins, minerals, good fats and is the healthiest form of milk. The fact is that raw milk cheese tends to have more flavor."
Anke Heymach, cheese affineur

Camembert, which we buy in the supermarket, is often made with pasteurized milk. But because of the heated milk, it sometimes tastes tough and rubbery. It is much more important how a cheese is refined in the end. Anke Heymach uses raw and pasteurized milk.

"I think people wouldn't taste it if we didn't tell whether it's made from raw milk or pasteurized. If it's a good cheese, well made, you can't taste it."
Anke Heymach, cheese affineur

For Anke Heymach, pasteurized milk also has advantages: Because the germs are killed, pregnant women, the elderly or the sick can also eat the cheese without hesitation. This is not possible with raw milk. The French are still worried about their Camembert from Normandy. Some also see the danger that in the future large manufacturers will be able to manufacture this special camembert variety on an industrial scale in huge quantities. And then the fine Norman becomes a conventional tough Camembert. And the good made from raw milk becomes a luxury product for top chefs. In any case, top chefs in France warn against this.

More on the subject:

  • The milk needs a new image | Lowest price: less than 20 cents per liter of milk. The peasants despair, the first threatened with ruin. We want to help and increase milk consumption.
  • Milk in cheap and unfair | Dairy farmers all over Europe are fed up: milk is cheap, and yogurt and quark are sold in supermarkets. And the farmers get less coal.
  • Protectors and killers | Bacteria make cheese out of milk and they make salami red. Viruses are also becoming increasingly popular in the food industry.