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Dutch cheesemaker takes top honor in world contest

A culture like no other: Dutch Vermeer deemed world's top cheese; Swiss take 2nd, 3rd places By The Associated Press

MADISON, Wis. (AP) ' A Dutch cheesemaker's Vermeer cheese has been named the world's best at an international cheese contest in Madison, Wis.

The cheese beat out two Swiss cheeses Wednesday, and marked the first time in four contests the Swiss didn't take top honors.

The winning cheesemaking company was Friesland Campina in Wolvega, The Netherlands.

Dutch judge Peter Piersma says he's excited for his country and proud of his colleagues.

The first runner-up was Kaserei Grundbach, a company in Wattenwill, Switzerland, that entered a smear-ripened semi-soft winzer kase.

A fellow Swiss cheesemaker, SO Appenzeller Kase of Appenzell, was the second runner-up with its Appenzeller cheese.

Seven of the 16 finalists were from the U.S., including five from Wisconsin. Five were from Switzerland, two from The Netherlands and one each from Canada and Spain.

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