The Mirror News

The Big Cheese coming to Fish Creek

IT ISN’T every day that two leading lights of the dairy industry decide to join forces to create something extra special, but that is what is happening at Fish Creek.

Barry Charlton and Cheryl Hulls of Berrys Creek Gourmet Cheese (made on site at Berrys Creek, north of Leongatha) and Fish Creek organic dairy farmers Paul and Carolyn Pangrazzi, producers of Pangrazzi Cheese, are excited to announce a new working relationship, with a new 600 square metre cheese factory to be built on the Pangrazzi dairy farm.

At the new facility Paul and Carolyn’s much lauded organic cows’ milk will be used to produce a new organic range of cheeses to complement the award-winning selection at Berrys Creek Gourmet Cheese.

Barry and Cheryl have spent years perfecting their cheese making craft to become among the most awarded artisan cheese makers in Australia. Most recently their Berrys Creek Tarwin Blue won Champion Blue Cheese in the 2014 Australian Grand Dairy Awards and their Berrys Creek Rowefords Blue won Champion Goat’s and Sheep’s Milk Cheese. Each of the 430 products in the awards had already won a gold medal at a state show before being considered for these prestigious invitation-only awards.

Barry and Cheryl live and breathe cheese and are looking forward to being able to substantially increase their production with the joint venture with the organic dairy farmers. Testament to their generosity of character is their willingness to pass on their valuable knowledge to Paul, who has a promising collection of hard and soft cheese recipes.

It has not been easy for the couples to remain tight-lipped while awaiting shire council approval and the application of final touches to their plans.

It is a different story now, with both parties hardly able to contain their excitement as earthworks are due to begin any day. From here it will be full steam ahead for construction, in readiness for an expected completion date of early June.

The jointly occupied factory will boast state-of-the-art maturing and cooling technology, while remaining very energy efficient, with the aim of being as sustainable as possible.

The premises took many months to design, with a heavy emphasis placed on being at the frontier of manufacturing technology to ensure the output of products of the highest quality. Joshuah Hilder, the project manager responsible for the planning and execution of the factory project, is especially thankful for all the hard work put in by both parties’ family and friends. Particular thanks go to Benni Hulls and Amanda Lawson, who have strongly influenced the final design of the factory.

All parties involved would also like to thank the community for their ongoing support, and they look forward to experiencing the next exciting chapter in the story of Berrys Creek Gourmet Cheese, and the new beginning for Pangrazzi Cheese.


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