Monks Are Sitting on 4K Discs of Cheese

With demand plummeting, French monastery sells online
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 26, 2021 4:40 PM CDT
At French Monastery, 3 Tons of Cheese Must Go
Creamy, mild, semi-soft French cheese first made by Trappist monks, has piled up at a monastery.   (Getty/barmalini)

The pandemic has cut sales of the cheese produced at a French monastery in half. Restaurants are closed, and customers don't stop by the Cîteaux Abbey's shop these days. So the basement is filling up with 4,000 semi-soft discs, the Guardian reports. The Trappist monks who live there have approached the problem from the supply side. "We tried explaining to our 75 cows that they needed to produce less milk, but they don't seem to have understood," said Brother Jean-Claude, who handles marketing. So they're turning to the internet. "We need to clear out our stock," he said.

Working with Divine Box, a startup, the 19 monks in Burgundy have put their cheese up for sale online, listed under "Operation Cheese." They want to move more than a ton of product by Tuesday. "We're going to make it," Jean-Claude said. The cheese, which won a silver medal at an international competition in Lyon last year, appears to be selling so well on the French-language site that keeping it in stock is an issue. (More monks stories.)

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