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300% Tariff Slapped on Roquefort


DanCole42
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Bush War on Roquefort Raises a Stink in France

Who wants to start a cheese-running black market?

In the back booths of the shadier drinking establishments of border towns, you may notice those individuals who do not draw attention to themselves, yet they carry a certain, um...air...about them...these are the contrebandiers de fromage who ply their craft in the dark of night. Sometimes, after a few rounds of spirits, they may share some of their stories with you. One of them I spoke with related a hair-raising tale of how only a quick spray of Febreeze© saved he and his precious cargo from seizure by the "Velveeteers", the smugglers' mocking nickname for the despised jackbooted agents of the Department of Blandness....

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I gave it a mention on DC Foodies today:

The war on Roquefort cheese. Here it is in a nutshell, or a cheese wheel--if you (The European Union) are not willing to buy our hormone-laden meat, then we're effectively banning your wholesome, natural and unique Roquefort cheese (among other European luxury products) by imposing a 300% tariff on said cheese. This story was written up in the Washington Post this week and quickly spread throughout the foodie blogosphere. The story moved Jill Erber, owner of Cheesetique in Del Ray, to write a response on Cheesetique's website. Erber stated "Obviously, Roquefort is a TEENY TINY portion of imported food in the US, so why pick on this poor little cheese and, by association, the 600-person town of Roquefort? It’s called symbolism, my friends. Roquefort, like foie gras and truffles, simply says, “France”.

Erber is also responding by offering Roquefort cheese for $20.00 a pound, effecting her own culinary protest of sorts. She will carry Roquefort as long as supplies last which is "only a matter of time".

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Sigh. The last piece I bought was from Trader Joe's at the end of January, a mediocre and oversalted chunk of Societe Bee unit-priced at $13.99/lb. It's unaffordable now...running something like $30+/lb at Harris Teeter. Zabar's website is showing the usually-excellent Roquefort Papillon at $36/lb.

I just got done eating some crazy good turkey meatballs with Roquefort, which Cheesetique still had as of this chunk--still $20/lb. until it ain't no more.

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