The American Cheese Society is dedicated to providing its members, industry professionals and cheese enthusiasts with educational resources. Whether you are seeking information about best practices in cheesemaking, trying to get a better understanding of the terms used in the cheesemaking industry, or seeking information about food safety, our collection of resources is built to help support you and your business. Many of our resources are available to everyone, however, there are some resources that require an active ACS membership to access. We hope you will take time to explore our resources and learn more about becoming a member to access our exclusive members-only content.
There are multiple ways to describe, organize and classify cheese including texture, milk type, and place of origin. Regardless of the classification system, many varieties of cheese cross over from one category to another. Visit our Cheese Definitions page to learn more about the different ways by which cheese is defined and classified.
The ACS Cheese and Dairy Product Lexicon and Glossary (ACS Lexicon & Glossary) aims to facilitate conversations across the supply chain of cheese by creating a credible, modern resource that provides a greater understanding of the myriad ways in which cheese is discussed and described.
This Guide provides an easy reference for busy cheesemakers—especially small- to mid-size producers—and was created to encompass currently accepted best practices for cheesemaking. The second edition of the Guide, published in February 2017, includes updates based on changing regulations, incorporates direct feedback and clarification from reviewers at the U.S. Food & Drug Administration, and provides more current resources and templates where available. This Guide gleans the key requirements, suggestions, and practices from that vast sea of information, and condenses them into an easily digestible format written in accessible language. Get a free digital copy of the guide here.
The ACS team has compiled tips and information for planning a successful cheese festival. From pre-event planning to post-event logistics, this guide is a useful reference for planning large-scale events that serve cheese and feature cheesemakers. Get your copy of the guide here.
The Safe Cheesemaking Hub is dedicated to providing an easily searchable compendium of vetted food safety resources for cheesemakers. The website serves as a “one-stop shop” for the valuable resources, research, training, and tools artisan cheesemakers need to enhance their food safety practices. This site also features a “Retailers Toolkit” designed to provide food safety resources for cheese and specialty food retailers.
The Safe Cheesemaking Hub is also home to many online education resources including the New Online Course: Food Safety Basics for Artisan Cheesemakers. Visit The Safe Cheesemaking Hub to access this training and other important resources.
The American Cheese Society (ACS) Body of Knowledge is a comprehensive framework that aims to encompass the interdisciplinary domains of information that comprise the knowledge base of the cheese industry. The ACS Body of Knowledge was first compiled in 2010, modified in 2012, and revised in 2017 to reflect the dynamic nature of the growing cheese industry. Read ACS’s Body of Knowledge framework here.
The ACS Library, powered by Zotero, is an online database of industry resources. The database covers recent news articles about the cheese industry, research papers, and professional tips and guides from those in the industry. Visit The ACS Library on Zotero to view the folders, browse tags, and search the ACS Library.
ACS offers online education to its members at no cost throughout the year in the form of educational webinars. Please note that most archived webinars require a password for viewing. The password may be found here. In addition to these webinars, you can also find online training at the Safe Cheesemaking Hub.
- Hot Technologies- 2018!
- International Considerations & Licensing
- How To Make The Most Of Your Label
- Advanced Trademark Seminar
- Intellectual Property Rights Overview Seminar
- The FDA’s Food Safety Plan Builder Tool
- Cheese Plant Workers: How to Train and Retain These Essential Employees
- Crash Course – FSVP Regulations for Very Small Importers
- Spotlight on Technology: Creating Flow Diagrams with Lucidchart
- The Use of Listeria Phages as a Food Safety Tool for Cheese and Dairy Products & Environmental Applications
- Food Product Labeling with Jason Foscolo
- All in the Family
- What You Need to Know About the Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP)
- Crisis Preparedness and Recall Procedures for Wholesalers, Retailers, and Retailers Who Wholesale
- Crisis Preparedness and Recall Procedures for Cheese Producers
- Using the Safe Cheesemaking Hub
- How DO You Sell Your Cheese? A Cheesemaker Roundtable
- Leavin’ On a Jet Plane: Expanding Your Operations to an Airport
- Best Practices in Hiring & Firing Employees
- Marketing It In America: Guiding Cheese from Farm to Plate
- Sodium Reduction: FDA’s Voluntary Initiative
- Pressure Cooker Confidence…for Presenters!
- From Grass to Vat: The Impact of Feed on Milk Quality and Components
- From Passive Listener to Active Participant: Increasing Audience Engagement
- Online Content Strategy: The Time for Change is Now!
- A Soulful Slice of Cheese History
- FSMA Preventive Controls for Human Food: Exemptions, Requirements & Deadlines for Very Small Businesses
- Make the Most of Your Member Benefits! (Part 1& Part 2)
ACS engages with regulators and other key stakeholders on a regular basis to advance issues of importance to our members. This work keeps American cheesemakers, and particularly traditional cheesemaking practices, top-of-mind for industry decision-makers. An overview of advocacy and engagement efforts can be found here. Please note that this list may not be all-inclusive, and updates are made regularly.
The American Cheese Society (ACS) has released a Report of Key Findings from its inaugural 2016 State of the U.S. Artisan/Specialty Cheese Industry Survey. This report provides a snapshot of the small businesses that make up the community of artisan, farmstead, and specialty cheesemakers in America – a community that has been growing for years, with very little real data available to provide greater insight into this market segment. To read the report click here.