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Working in Cheese – The Cheese Educator

Academy of Cheese is on a mission to take cheese education global, in support of everyone who works in the cheese industry and the consumers you enjoy eating it. It provides professional development for its members and provides a platform to formally recognise the wealth of talent working in the cheese industry.

For the next installment of our ‘working in cheese’ series we spoke to Noemie Richard, cheese educator and product developer for L’école du Fromage by Savencia UK. Noemie is also an Academy of Cheese Training Partner, teaching our Level One course to both trade and consumers.

About Noemie Richard

Noemie Richard is “Maître Fromager” (Cheese Master) of the Guilde International de Fromagerie and Cheese education manager of Savencia UK. She comes from the French Alpes, a region known for its cheese tradition. After studying Cheese making in France, Canada and Argentina, Noemie graduated as a food engineer in 2011.

Noemie travelled to Chile and spent 2 years working in a cheese factory. In 2013 she created the “L’école du Fromage” (cheese school) which spread across Peru, Colombia and Argentina, training over 3,000 gastronomy professionals across the continent.

Her School of Cheese was sought after in the UK, which led to her moving to London in 2018. Today she leads her cheese education mission in Europe through her role as Head of Cheese education and product development for the French cheese company Savencia UK, the continental cheese specialists. Noemie is also a judge in many international competitions, including the World Cheese Awards, Mondial du Fromage and the British Cheese Awards.

My favourite thing about Academy of Cheese is being part of a network of passionate people who share the same ambition of developing cheese education.

Q&A with Cheese Educator Noemie Richard

I’ve been working in cheese for … 10 years

My first job in the cheese world was … in cheese production in a Canadian artisan factory where I was in charge of cheese production assessment and improvement.

My current job title … is “Cheese education manager and product developer” and in my role I’m responsible for cheese training and education for professionals, and for developing new cheese products for the UK market.

A typical work day involves … sourcing different cheese recipes from the continent through site visits, sharing them with the suppliers and attending cheese tastings. I am also working closely with cheese packaging and processing experts to design an appropriate and workable offer. It also involves preparing educational content for cheese training and delivering this training on a regular basis.

My favourite part of my job is … the sourcing part where I learn about a new Cheese recipe, its history and can obviously enjoy the tasting of it.

In my career I’m most proud of … having trained around 5,000 cheese professionals in South America throughout the work of the School of Cheese of which I was in charge of.

Registro Fotográfico Taller de elaboración de queso a cargo de Noemie Richard y Haroldo Magariños en Inacap de Apoquindo. En Santiago; 06/12/2017. Fotógrafo: Valentino Saldivar.

The worst part of my job is … facing the reality of the market and limitations to developing new ideas.

My advice for someone wanting to become a Cheese education manager would be … to have hands on experience with milk and cheese making which is a really key element to understand the history, tradition and human aspect behind the cheese world and each individual cheese.

I joined the Academy of Cheese because … I am in charge of the development of the Ecole du Fromage of Savencia UK, aiming to develop the Cheese education for professionals in the industry and I think the Academy of Cheese.

My favourite thing about Academy of Cheese is being part of a network of passionate people who share the same ambition of developing the cheese education.

I see the future of the cheese industry as being more and more innovative, with constant improvements the quality of the products.

My favourite cheese is a Beaufort d’Alpage and I like to enjoy it with a Chardonnay from Jura.

My ideal cheeseboard will definitely include Beaufort, Goat Crottin, Epoisses, Ossau Iraty and Blue Stilton (for a bit of UK touch)

A big thank you to Noemie and our Patron Ecole du Fromage of Savencia UK