It’s no secret that Wisconsoners love cheese. Not only have they embraced the cheesehead moniker and proudly wear foam cheese as hats, but as “America’s Dairyland” Wisconsin also leads the nation in cheese production with an astounding 3.37 billion pounds of cheese produced last year.
And, as of last week a few thousand pounds of that delicious Wisconsin cheese ended up on the world’s largest cheese board.
Yes, our neighbors to the east have solidified their cheese-loving title by officially setting a new Guinness World Record for the world’s largest cheese board.
The Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin pulled together to achieve this massive and delicious feat. Not for the faint of heart or the lactose intolerant, the cheese board held over two tons of cheese with 4,437 pounds and 9.92 ounces of cheese. Insane. They beat the previous record holder that was set in the Netherlands by over 1,000 pounds.
There were over 145 different varieties of cheese all produced by dairy farms and businesses from around the state of Wisconsin. All these amazing cheeses were arranged on a custom made, beautifully crafted cheese board made of white oak that reached an astounding 35 feet long and over 7 feet wide. And if that wasn’t enough, the grand centerpiece was a gigantic 2,000 pound Henning’s cheddar wheel which required an actual forklift to place it on the cheese board.
The whole event shut down an entire block in downtown Madison and gave these expert Wisconsin cheese makers the opportunity to show off their talents with all types and styles of award-winning unique specialty and artisan cheeses. And you know they know what they’re doing as Wisconsin has won more awards for their cheese than any other state or country and makes 47% of all the specialty cheese in the United States.
“We wanted to showcase the amazing breadth of the award winning cheeses in Wisconsin and we thought — what better way to do that than to create the world’s largest cheeseboard,” says Suzanne Fanning, Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin VP of Marketing Communications in a statement. “Wisconsin’s licensed cheesemakers put the art in artisan, drawing from their rich European heritage, cheese making traditions and impressive innovations, and we’re thrilled to share their masterful creations with the world in a unique and fun way.”
For those lucky 45,000 hungry people in attendance for this world record event, they were able to sample from this incredible spread. Even luckier still, were the first 2,000 cheese-lovers in line who received a small cheese board replica to take home. Attendees were also able to enter a raffle in the hopes of winning wheels of cheese with all the proceeds going to the Great American Milk Drive. And if anybody could consume over two tons of cheese it would be Wisconsoners, but any cheese that wasn’t completely devoured at this world record-breaking event was donated to the Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin.
So congratulations and a gouda job to our lovely neighbors in Wisconsin. Perhaps Minnesota is next and can compete for the world’s largest bowl of wild rice.