DCI Cheese Company named exclusive U.S. distributor of Port Salut® and Leerdammer®

DCI Cheese Company (“DCI”) is pleased to announce a new business agreement with Bel Brands USA naming DCI as the exclusive distributor for Port Salut and Leerdammer in the United States. Retailers interested in purchasing Port Salut and Leerdammer can contact a DCI sales representative by e-mail at moreinfo@dcicheeseco.com or by phone at 1.800.782.0741.

Port Salut (pronounced “POOR sah-LEW”) is a traditional monastery cheese originally created in 1816 by Trappist monks at the Abbaye du Port du Salut in the Loire Valley. It was the first French cheese produced from pasteurized milk and features a smooth and creamy texture. This semi-soft cow's milk cheese is most recognized by its edible, bright orange washed rind. Port Salut’s dense, pale yellow interior has a velvety texture and a distinctively rich yet mild flavor. This slightly acidic, savory cheese is popular for entertaining or snacking, especially with fruit, and pairs beautifully with light red and dry white wines. Port Salut is produced exclusively by Bel Brands and is available from DCI in 4 lb. wheels, 7-9 oz. random weight wedges and 5.3 oz. exact weight wedges.

While the Leerdammer brand was not officially unveiled until 1977, its history dates back to 1914. Leerdammer was created to compete with Gouda and Edam by two entrepreneurial Dutch men in the municipality of Leerdam, the cheese’s namesake. It is made from pasteurized cow's milk and has a slightly elastic, semi-hard texture and a creamy white flesh dotted with numerous large eyes. Leerdammer is a delectable cross between traditional Dutch Gouda and Emmental cheeses with a sweet, nutty, mild taste that becomes more pronounced with age. It is perfect on a gourmet cheese plate, on a sandwich or as an ingredient in salads and entrées. It pairs nicely with light-bodied red wines like Beaujolais. Leerdammer is produced exclusively by Bel Brands and is available from DCI in 26 and 28 pound wheels.

“We’re so excited to have exclusive U.S. distribution rights for these two great brands,” says Dominique Delugeau, Senior Vice President of Sales at DCI Cheese Company. “Leerdammer is Europe’s favorite semi-hard cheese and Port Salut is one of France’s finest cheeses. Americans are demanding rich flavors and high quality from the specialty cheeses they buy and we’re pleased to be able to offer them two of Europe’s best cheeses to fill this need.”

Port Salut and Leerdammer are available to consumers at select retailers nationwide. For more information or to place an order, contact a DCI sales representative by e-mail at moreinfo@dcicheeseco.com or by calling 1.800.782.0741.

About DCI Cheese Company

An innovative leader in the cheese industry since 1975, Richfield, Wisconsin-based DCI Cheese Company is the largest importer, manufacturer and marketer of specialty cheeses and other restaurant-quality prepared foods in the United States. The company offers an impressive portfolio of fully-owned or exclusively-held imported and domestic specialty cheese brands including il Giardino®, Joan of Arc®, King’s Choice®, Nikos®, Organic Creamery® and Salemville®, among others. DCI’s value-added products can be found in restaurants, grocery stores, club stores and specialty shops across the country. DCI’s mission is to be the leading solution-based provider in the cheese industry and actively seeks strategic partnerships to expand their manufacturing, branding, sales, marketing and distribution. For more information on DCI Cheese Company and their portfolio of specialty cheese and prepared food brands, visit www.dcicheeseco.com.

About Bel Brands USA

Bel Brands USA, Inc. manufactures and markets branded cheeses including The Laughing Cow® cheese wedges, Mini Babybel® (America’s #1 snacking cheese), Kaukauna, Boursin, Port Salut, Leerdammer, WisPride, Merkts, Owls Nest, Connoisseur and Price’s natural and gourmet cheese spreads. Bel Brands USA was named Chicago’s “101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For” in 2009 and 2010. The company is currently headquartered in Elk Grove Village, Illinois, and is a subsidiary of Paris-based Fromageries Bel, a world leader in branded cheeses. www.bel-group.com