The Big Cheese
9th October 2011 by Andrew Needs, Ottawa | 2 Comments
It goes without saying that when I have official events at home (the official residence) or here in the High Commission I will showcase New Zealand wine. Lamb is a regular feature and, more recently, green lipped mussels. This all goes down well with our Canadian guests, many of whom are already fans of New Zealand food and beverage, and others are about to become so.
Where I have, until now, been stymied, is in my desire to have some representation of the New Zealand dairy industry during functions. The challenge is that there is very little New Zealand dairy produce in Canadian shops. In order to protect the Canadian domestic dairy industry, tariffs placed on New Zealand products are very high, as much as 300 percent in some cases. While New Zealand dairy farmers are incredibly efficient, even they are hard pressed to find profitability when the levels of protection are so high.
I was fortunate last week, however, to lay my hands on some good old New Zealand Cheddar courtesy of a friendly supplier, who was able to courier me some as a “sample”. That sample turned out to be something that left the traditional Kiwi one kilo block of cheddar well and truly in the dust (see photo below). My next task will be to work out how to ensure good enough storage conditions so this generous sized block can continue catering for official events well into 2012 and beyond.