California Artisan Cheese Festival is a nonprofit organization with the mission to educate people who want to learn more about artisan cheese, support the artisan cheesemaking community and its sustainability, and celebrate and enjoy the creations of the artisan cheesemakers.
Through its educational offerings, the festival also helps consumers better understand artisan cheeses and their advantages over non-artisan cheeses. It also shows the wide variety of artisan cheeses available and the flexibility with which they can be used. The festival’s marketplace event on Sunday gives the cheesemakers an excellent opportunity to showcase and sell their cheeses.
The festival helps the artisan cheesemaking community directly by contributing 10 percent of all ticket proceeds to nonprofit organizations that work to (1) protect and preserve the lands needed by the artisan cheesemakers for their cows, sheep and goats; (2) train and encourage the next generation of milk producers and cheesemakers; and (3) support the artisan cheesemaking community in California. The festival also supports the Redwood Empire Food Bank, which is working to eliminate hunger in Sonoma County. California Artisan Cheese Festival has to date made donations totaling more than $90,000 to the following: Sonoma Land Trust, Marin Agricultural Land Trust, Petaluma Future Farmers of America, California Artisan Cheese Guild, Redwood Empire Food Bank