Owning a small business during a pandemic has been challenging. In addition to Cheesemonger Box, we have two retail cheese and specialty food shops located outside of New York City in Fairfield County, Connecticut. We closed our doors in late March and moved to online and phone orders with curbside pickup. While our in-person sales plummeted, we watched our online business grow and gained some incredible momentum with Cheesemonger Box. Cheese to your door has been the order of the day. We have managed to stay afloat so far and continue to order cheese from our suppliers. We have fought hard to keep the cheese moving from farm to consumer. Despite this, the farms and small cheesemakers we rely on to fill our cheese cases are not as lucky.
The American artisan cheese industry is in jeopardy, and we need your help! The COVID-19 crisis is devastating the entire American artisan cheese industry, from dairy farmers and cheesemakers to distributors, restaurants, and cheese counters across the country. American artisan cheese has always enjoyed strong support from chefs, and the restaurant industry accounts for at least half of their sales. With the restaurant industry shuttered, these cheesemakers have nowhere to sell their cheese, particularly the softer, more perishable cheeses. Add to that, consumers have been stocking up at the big box retailers and choosing commodity cheese. Many are skipping the specialty shops where artisan cheese is hand-sold. So what is the answer to their survival? It is you, the cheese lover.
Together with other cheese industry professionals, we have banded together in a grassroots way to find a way to sustain our struggling industry. The Victory Cheese Box is an effort to pull the supply chain together in one coordinated marketing and promotional effort to engage consumers and raise awareness. Like the Victory Garden movement of WWII, this is a call to consumers to purchase domestically produced cheese, because if they don't choose it now, it may be lost forever. With The Victory Cheese Box, we will try and off-set losses in some sales channels by increasing sales of U.S. artisan cheeses in others –giving those who sell it a rallying cry to bring consumers to the table. Here at Cheesemonger Box, we have selected three cheeses from a few of our favorite farmhouse cheesemakers. These small, family-owned farms need our support. The more boxes we sell, the more cheese we can purchase from them. Help us help them by ordering a Victory Cheese Box today. Also, we will donate 10% of our sales to the American Cheese Education Foundation. Together, let's ensure the survival of deliciousness!