Cheesemaker Education Day

What: Cheesemaker Education Day is the west coast’s premier educational conference for the artisan cheese industry.

When: January 9, 8am-6pm

Where: Oregon State University, Oldfield Animal Teaching Facility, 3521 SW Campus Way, Corvallis, OR 97331

Who: Creamery owners and cheesemakers from Oregon, the NW, and northern California; people interested in starting a creamery business, others related to the artisan cheese industry, and students. In addition to the seminars, there will be a small trade show for cheese industry vendors.

Cost: Tickets are $75, and include all seminars, lunch, coffee breaks, and reception.  First ticket $25 for Oregon Cheese Guild members.  After January 4 and at the door, tickets are $100.

Buy tickets here! 

Conference Schedule


8:00-9:00            Quickbooks for Small Creameries
A quick tutorial on the basics of Quickbooks online and desktop. Includes pointers on reports, invoices, COGS, and inventory.
Speaker:      Joy Huffman, ebs Associates


9:00-10:30           The Bleating Heart Experience: Working Through a Recall
A recall can be a traumatic experience for all food producers. However, there are ways to be prepared if a recall happens. Hear about lessons learned from an artisan cheese maker who went through the recall experience. Learn from an FDA insider how to prepare for recalls and how to best work with the FDA. Advantages and disadvantages associated with environmental and product testing will also be discussed.
Speakers:      Seana Doughty, Bleating Heart;  Dr. Joy Waite-Cusic, OSU.


10:30-10:50         Break


10:50-12:00         ODA Regulatory Updates, FSMA and Its Impact on the Cheese Industry
FSMA will bring important changes to cheese producers. Artisan cheese makers still have some time to prepare while larger cheese companies are already adapting to FSMA requirements. Learn what Tillamook Creamery has done to prepare for FSMA. Join in an informal discussion with Oregon Department of Agriculture about FSMA, antibiotic testing, and other regulatory issues of interest to cheese producers.
Speakers:      Frank Barcellos, ODA; John Boortz, Tillamook Creamery


12:00-12:45         Lunch


12:45-1:05           Terroir and Cheese Update
Your cheese is unique and nobody else can make cheeses that are similar. The session focuses on terroir and the bacteria that make your cheese special. This is an update on the third year of research into milk from different Oregon regions. This part of the research is focused on milk from the Oregon coast vs milk from the Willamette Valley.
Speaker:      Dr. Lisbeth Goddik, OSU


1:05-1:25              Maximizing Sales at Events & Festivals
A quick primer on best practices for selling more cheese at events and festivals from your colleagues who do it best.
Speakers:      Greg Drobot, Face Rock Creamery; Bob McCall, Cypress Grove Chevre


1:25-2:10              Social Media for Artisan Creameries
Ten easy things you can do through Facebook and Google to build your brand, gain and retain more customers, and sell more cheese!
Speaker:      Tiffany SalzmanMambo Media


2:10-2:30             Break


2:30-4:00            Distribution: From Courtship to Commitment
Finding the right balance of self and traditional distribution is a complex decision.  This session covers how to approach distributor relationships in a strategic way.  First we’ll look at implications for pricing and margins, taking all of your costs into consideration.  Next is evaluating your options, deciding who to work with, and how to approach them.  Finally, once you’re in, how to most effectively work together to maximize sales.
Moderator:      Steve Jones, Cheese Bar and Chizu; Speakers: Greg Drobot, Face Rock Creamery; Jimmy Leachman, Provvista; Bill Stephenson, DPI


4:00-4:10             Oregon Cheese Guild Update


4:10-6:00             Reception


9:00-4:00 Cheesemaking Track: Hands-On Cheesemaking with Dale Baumgartner, Tillamook’s Head Cheesemaker – SOLD OUT

Learn cheese making from an expert. With over 40 years of experience, Dale Baumgartner is Oregon’s most experienced cheese maker. He is responsible for the production of numerous award winning cheeses. This is your chance to understand what it takes to consistently make top quality cheese. Although the cheese session is focused on Cheddar production, this is an opportunity to learn about cheese making techniques that apply to all cheeses. Attendance in this session is capped so you have time to ask questions about many topics such as milk quality, starter culture, phage, impact of variations in protein content, or which parameters of your cheese recipe must be kept constant and which can fluctuate slightly without impacting final cheese quality.

Bonus speaker: Sandy Speich, specialist in cultures and enzymes at Dairy Connection, will be on hand to discuss coagulants and adjunct cultures.


Vendor Displays

With the move to the new Oldfield Agriculture Building, Cheesemaker Education Day can now accommodate vendor displays! There are two options available through our ticketing site:

Cheesemaker Education Day Sponsorship – $500

  • 8’ table with two chairs in premier location
  • 2 tickets to Cheesemaker Education Day seminars, lunch, and reception
  • Logo on CED website
  • Ad and listing in CED program
  • Mentions in event promotion emails
  • Access to attendee list
  • Support the Oregon Cheese Guild and its members

Display Table – $200

  • 8’ table with two chairs
  • 1 ticket to Cheesemaker Education Day seminars, lunch, and reception
  • Listing in CED program

Contact Katie Bray at katiembray(at)gmail(dot)com for more information on Cheesemaker Education Day or click here to purchase tickets, display tables, and sponsorships.