ACS Announces 2016 Conference & Competition in Des Moines

8 years ago Jasmine Romero 2 Minute(s) to read

Denver, CO (January 15, 2016) – Cheese in the
Heartland, the American Cheese Society’s (ACS)
33rd Annual Conference & Competition, will be held in
Des Moines, Iowa from Wednesday, July 27 through
Saturday, July 30, 2016. Events will be held at the Iowa
Events Center and various locations around the city.

Presented with Marquee Sponsor Swiss Valley
Farms/Caves of Faribault, ACS’s first Conference &
Competition in Iowa will welcome 1,200 industry
members – including cheesemakers, retailers,
distributors, importers, equipment suppliers, specialty
food producers, and even enthusiasts who simply
appreciate great cheese.

Among the rich program of educational sessions and
networking events in development, highlights include:

  • Opening Reception on the farm, hosted at
    Maytag Dairy Farms
  • “The Power of Beliefs in Business,” an Opening
    Keynote by Ari Weinzweig, Co-Owner and Founding Partner of Zingerman’s
  •  “The Art of Fermentation,” a Closing Keynote by celebrated “fermentation revivalist”
    Sandor Katz
  • 5-part food safety track covering pathogens, sanitation, testing, and more
  •  BOB Talks: Bold, Original, Brief! Timely topics presented in just 10 minutes
  •  Festival of Cheese and Public Cheese Sale, held together for the first time!

Also held in Des Moines in conjunction with Cheese in the Heartland:

  • The largest competition of its kind, the 2016 ACS Judging & Competition recognizes
    cheeses of the highest quality for their aesthetic and technical merits. After two intense
    days of judging in Des Moines, the first-place winners in each category will be evaluated
    together, and a “Best of Show” will be chosen. Winners will be announced at the annual
    Awards Ceremony on Friday, July 29 at the Iowa Events Center. With a near-record 1,779
    products entered by 267 companies in 2015, ACS anticipates strong participation in 2016.
    Learn more at
  • The 5th annual ACS Certified Cheese Professional® Exam will be held on Wednesday,
    July 27 at the Iowa Events Center. The exam, which encourages improved standards of
    comprehensive cheese knowledge and service throughout the industry, offers cheese
    professionals the opportunity to earn the title of ACS Certified Cheese Professional®, or
    ACS CCP®. There are currently 595 ACS Certified Cheese Professionals® throughout the
    United States, Canada, and Europe. Learn more at
    Members of the public can purchase tickets to attend the Festival of Cheese, which also gets
    them into the Public Cheese Sale with great deals on cheeses sampled at the Festival. Cheese
    lovers who want to participate by volunteering behind-the-scenes receive a complimentary
    Festival of Cheese ticket and a special, cheesy t-shirt to commemorate the event.

Industry members are encouraged to save these important dates for Cheese in the Heartland:

 Certified Cheese Professional Exam®

  • March 31: Deadline to apply for the exam

ACS Judging & Competition

  • April 6 – May 13: Regular entry period ($60/entry)
  • May 14 – May 20: Late entry period ($85/entry)
    Conference Registration
  • May 4 – May 24: Early Bird registration ($495 members/$694 non-members)
  • May 25 – June 28: Regular registration ($595 members/$794 non-members)
  • June 29 – July 30: Late/Onsite registration ($695 members/$894 non-members)

Learn more about Cheese in the Heartland at

Subscribe to our Mailing List

Enter your email address to join our mailing list to stay up-to-date.