Trefaldwyn Cheese, the only cheese maker in Montgomery, has launched its first product – Trefaldwyn Blue, a blue cheese which is available from specialist food stores, delis and other retailers around Powys.

The owner and head cheese maker, Clare Jones, created the initial recipe for Trefaldwyn Blue at her home in Montgomery, where she has lived for the past 15 years, and from where she runs her business.

Clare, who was previously a primary school teacher has given up the classroom in favour of cheesemaking, said: “I’ve spent the last year perfecting the recipe for Trefaldwyn Blue. The result is a lovely, full flavoured, soft and creamy blue cheese made from pasteurised Welsh cow’s milk.”

“I decided to start making cheese a couple of years ago. It was something I had thought about for a while because we are surrounded by so many lovely small dairy farms with rich pastures that produce the very highest quality milk, yet it all gets collected and taken away to large dairies for processing. I want to support local dairy farmers by producing local cheese using their milk. It has been impossible to buy locally produced cheese in Montgomeryshire, and my mission is to change that!”

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Six months ago, Clare reached the test-batch stage and started to involve local businesses, giving samples to get feedback. Barrie and Jojo from the High Street Deli in Newtown commented: “We could not be more excited about bringing this exquisite, luxurious blue cheese to our customers. We are often asked about ‘local’ cheeses so to have a company setting up over the hill from the deli is thrilling. It will be a delight to offer Trefaldwyn Blue in our cheese counter and in our cheese toasties. What an early Christmas present.”

Over the coming weeks the cheese is available from local shops, including The High Street Deli in Newtown, Rikki Lloyd Butcher's in Welshpool, Derwen Farm Shop in Guilsfield and Castle Kitchen in Montgomery. It will also be on the menu in the Dragon Hotel and the Checkers in Montgomery, as well as on full display at cheese tasting events from Shed38 zero waste shop (also in Montgomery).

Clare has been working with the Welsh Government Food Centre in Horeb, near Cardigan.

She said: “The support I have received has been amazing, especially the help from Mark Jones, who makes his own multi-award-winning cheese."

Trefaldwyn Cheese is currently produced at Horeb, however full production will be moved to Montgomery once a suitable location has been found.