A French monastery within the coronary heart of Burgundy has launched an emergency on-line sale to get rid of 1000’s of its artisanal cheeses, that are languishing in its cellars as Covid-19 retains buyers away.

The Cîteaux Abbey, simply south of Dijon, birthplace of the Cistercian Catholic order, often sells its raw-milk, semi-soft discs solely to eating places or guests to its on-site store. But a drop in demand because the coronavirus disaster erupted final yr has left the abbey’s 19 Trappist monks with 4,000 cheeses too many, a 2.8-tonne downside.

“We tried explaining to our 75 cows that they needed to produce less milk but they don’t seem to have understood,” stated brother Jean-Claude, in cost of advertising and marketing on the monastery, which was based in 1098.

“Our sales are down nearly 50%,” he stated, with French eating places nonetheless closed since 30 October as authorities attempt to stifle a 3rd wave of circumstances. “We need to clear out our stock.”

A Cistercian monk and the library of Citeaux Abbey
A Cistercian monk and the library of Cîteaux Abbey, about 19 miles south of Dijon, south-eastern France. Photograph: AFP/Getty

The monks’ cheese received the silver medal finally yr’s worldwide foods and drinks competitors in Lyon, a bastion of France’s culinary heritage.

The monks have teamed with the web startup Divine Box, which sells merchandise made by abbeys in France and elsewhere, with a aim of promoting a minimum of a tonne of cheese by Tuesday. The minimal order is 2 wheels at 23 euros (£20) every, plus transport.

According to the positioning, 700kg has already been ordered. “We’re going to make it,” Jean-Claude stated.

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