I’m not a big fan of Roquefort cheese. In fact, I won’t eat any cheese that has bits of visible mold in it — aka “blue cheese” — and I live in France, anyway, so this news doesn’t affect me at all. But if you’re in the US and you can’t imagine living without your Roquefort, you’re in big trouble.
On his way out of office, George W. Bush has decided to triple the import duties on the French cheese in response to the European Union’s refusal to import the hormone-laden American beef.
Now, I do eat beef, so this does actually affect me. I didn’t eat meat at all until I moved to France, partly because I trusted the meat here to be healthier than it is in the US (I was still a vegetarian during the Mad Cow scare that grazed France). If the French restaurants start serving meat imported from the US, I may just have to go back to my vegetarianism. Hmph. So as much as I don’t like the moldy stuff, please do make a fuss, or put more pressure on USDA to stop allowing antibiiotics and hormones into American meat.
I love Roquefort – how strange to place crippling duties on it. Perhaps it will be easier for people in the US – at least the North – to smuggle some in from Canada. We have it everywhere in Montréal – I’ve never seen a grocery store or of course a cheese shop that doesn’t carry it. Moreover, the yummy mouldy stuff is a ewe’s milk cheese, important for those of us who can’t consume cow’s milk products. I agree with Europe about the hormone-laden beef, and it is not because I wish ill on US ranchers or those anywhere else. It is causing serious hormone disruptions among both men and women. Hopefully the new US administration will take public health more seriously.But I certainly understand food dislikes. For example, I hate raw oysters (don’t like the mouthfeel) although I’m fond of sushi, ceviche and other raw fish dishes.