The raclette cheese is an easily meltable semi-hard cheese made from cow's milk. It is produced from pasteurized, thermized or raw milk. The maturation period is approximately 3 months. Raclette cheese made from sheep's milk is also popular. Raclette is suitable also as a semi-hard cheese to be consumed cold, from a 9 month maturation period, as "aged, thinly sliced and curled up cheese" (traditional "Hobelkäse").
The lactose content of cheeses in general depends on the production method and the period of maturation. In the case of a semi-hard cheeses, such as raclette, the lactose content is already reduced significantly during the coagulation of milk and the pressing of the curd, because lactose is contained in the liquid part (whey). During the subsequent maturation, lactic acid bacteria degrade the rest of lactose. After three months of maturing, lactose is fully decomposed. According to the criteria of the Swiss Ordinance on Special Foods, raclette cheese is then considered lactose-free.
Regarding gluten, no grain containing ingredients or auxiliary equipment is used during the manufacturing process. Raclette cheese is also gluten-free.
Nutrition facts (per 100 g, information can vary depending on the type of Raclette cheese):
Today, around 14,700 tons of raclette cheese are produced in Switzerland each year. Most producers are affiliated with a marketing organization.
In 1994, producers of swiss Raclette cheese joined forces in the association "Raclette-Suisse", based in Bern, to pursue joint sales promotion, efficient brand protection and consistent quality assurance for the product labelled Raclette Suisse®.
The strategy of Raclette Suisse focuses on consumption during the colder months of the year. In addition, consumption during the summer months, especially around the national holiday, is to be promoted through specific advertising measures. The positioning is primarily based on the image messages of coziness, conviviality and enjoyment.
The "Raclette du Valais AOP" organization, based in Conthey (VS), was founded in 2009. It provides services in the areas of marketing, brand protection, quality assurance and production planning for 12 members, who in turn represent the interests of over 60 AOP-certified businesses. These include cheese dairies, milk producers and cheese ripening plants.
The "Raclette du Valais AOP" brand positions itself primarily through image messages such as regional origin, authenticity, naturalness, conviviality and an intense taste experience.
between «Raclette Suisse» and «Raclette du Valais»
|Raclette Suisse||Raclette du Valais|
|Milk||pasteurized, thermized, raw||exclusively raw|
|Area of production||French speaking part of Switzerland, the region of Bern, Central- and Eastern Switzerland, Graubünden||exclusively in Valais, protected designation of origin (PDO)|
|Taste / flavor||mild, aromatic, tangy||fresh, tangy, alpine flora|
|Form & Gewicht||square, round, wheel 4.8 – 5.2 kg||round, wheel 5.5 – 7.5 kg|