A Gruyere from Switzerland was named the 2022 World Champion Cheese for the second consecutive time and third time overall. The cheese, called Gourmino Le Gruyère AOP, is made by Michael Spycher of Mountain Dairy Fritzenhaus in Bern, Switzerland, for Gourmino AG, according to the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA), which hosts the biennial World Championship Cheese Contest.

Earning an impressive score of 98.423 out of 100, Gourmino Le Gruyère AOP bested an impressive 2,978 entries in the 2022 World Championship Cheese Contest, WCMA said. The cheese also earned the World Champion title in 2020 and 2008.

First runner-up in the contest, with a score of 98.331, is Appenzeller Mild-Würzig, an Appenzeller made by Käserei Niederbüren AG of Niederbüren, Switzerland. Erzherzog Johann, a mature washed rind/smear ripened hard cheese made by Obersteirische Molkerei eGen of Knittelfeld, Steiermark, Austria, earned the second runner-up position with a score of 98.254, WCMA said.

“Cheesemakers worldwide have always been deeply committed to excellence in their craft,” said John Umhoefer, executive director of Madison, Wis.-based WCMA. “That commitment is abundantly clear in the work of this year’s winners. We congratulate them all on this outstanding achievement.”

A total of 29 nations were represented in the 2022 World Championship Cheese Contest. The United States led the pack with an impressive 94 Best in Class finishes, WCMA said. Cheesemakers from Switzerland took home 10 gold medals, while the Netherlands finished with seven.

Among the 33 U.S. states represented in the contest, Wisconsin cheesemakers excelled with 45 Best in Class titles. Next in line was New York with 12 first place finishes, WCMA said, followed by Idaho with 11 gold medal winners.

The World Championship Cheese Contest, initiated in 1957, is the largest technical cheese, butter, yogurt and whey competition in the world. A team of 53 internationally renowned judges evaluated all entries over the three-day event held in Madison. The top three finishers for each entry class were announced on Tuesday and Wednesday following preliminary judging rounds. For more information about the contest and complete results for all entry classes, visit  WorldChampionCheese.org.