Rumiano Cheese Co., California’s oldest family-owned cheese company, said it will celebrate a milestone achievement on Aug. 25, 2019: 100 years in business.

The Willows, Calif.-based the company, built by three Italian immigrant brothers in 1919, noted that it is deeply woven into the fabric of American history. Apollo 11 astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong enjoyed Rumiano cheese omelets upon their return to Earth after walking on the moon, while World War II soldiers got a taste of home with cans of Rumiano cheese in their U.S. Army K-rations.

Rumiano’s legacy began in 1919 when brothers Richard, Fred and John Rumiano purchased a 200-acre

With an ongoing pursuit of innovation, quality and environmental stewardship, as well as a pioneering vision cemented by industry-changing milestones along the way, Rumiano Cheese said it has continued to flourish and break new ground. Achievements include producing the first non-GMO organic cheese in the world, becoming the first American Humane Certified cheese company, and creating a first-of-its-kind zero waste cheese manufacturing plant and state-of-the-art wastewater treatment facility.

Now in its fourth generation of family ownership, the company continues to create grass-fed organic and artisanal cheese, with distribution in all 50 states and internationally in Mexico and Asia. The products are made from one of the best milk supplies in the world, Rumiano Cheese said, and are available at more than 2,000 retail stores, including those operated by Costco, Whole Foods Market, Raley’s and natural food stores across the country.

The company said it has won hundreds of awards dating back to the late 1920s, most recently taking home the coveted 2019 American Cheese Society Gold medal for its Rumiano Dry Monterey Jack. This, the company’s signature cheese, was developed by its founders and continues to be handcrafted in the same way and aged in the same cellars dug nearly a century ago.

As Rumiano Cheese commemorates its centenary, it said it continues to honor its past by building on its long history and century-old commitment to producing the best cheese in the world. Innovation, growth and sustainability efforts continue with the launch of new product lines, increased research and development, reinvestment in infrastructure and technology, facility expansion and entry into entirely new segments. The company plans to increase its footprint in traditional grocery chains and will double its current distribution to 4,000 stores.

“Our vision and values are stronger than ever, and the possibilities and opportunities that await us are enormous,” said Joe Baird, Rumiano Cheese’s CEO. “As we drive forward and embark on the next 100 years, we have no shortage of bold ideas, big plans and the responsibility to support what matters most. We’re committed to raising the bar in the way we help and support our dairy farmers. And we are committed to integrating greater regenerative agriculture and production practices that promote the long-term sustainability of the planet.”

Dairy Foods will feature Rumiano Cheese and its cheese plant operations in our September 2019 issue.