Organized by the Guild of Fine Food, the awards this year are part of the FORME festival in Bergamo, Italy, which will run from October 17-20.
This year, 3,804 cheeses are due to be judged in Bergamo, a 10% increase on last year’s record, and this year Japanese cheesemakers are making their debut at the awards, following Japan being added to the list of countries permitted to export dairy products to the EU earlier this year.
More than 40 Japanese entries, including hard, soft, blue, brown, goat’s and smoked cheeses, will join cheeses from 42 other nations from around the world, which will all be judged in a single day at Fiera di Bergamo.
Host nation Italy has 845 entries in the event.
This year, the awards are part of a celebration of all things cheese in Bergamo, as the city’s annual FORME festival expands to include the new international dairy trade show, B2Cheese.
A cheese market will also be taking place in the medieval heart of Bergamo and visitors will be able to experience the World Cheese Awards with a free exhibition of world champion cheeses at the Palazzo della Ragione and tickets available to watch the judging and to join tasting tours over the weekend.