Jumi (pronounced You-Me) is a Switzerland based cheese collective specializing in the importing and self-distribution of raw-milk cheeses with a growing presence here in New York. From their East Williamsburg space, Jumi imports a variety of esoteric cheeses made in its creamery from the milk of small dairy farms in the Emmental region of Switzerland.
Started in 2006 by friends Jurg Wyss and Mike Glauser, who come from generations of cheesemakers and beef cattle farmers, as a project to enhance Swiss cheeses. The dissolution of the Swiss Cheese Union, which restricted the types of cheese a creamery could produce, allowed for greater creativity in cheese production. Jurg and Mike sought to create Jumi as a co-op owned creamery working with small dairy farmers from around their region producing raw-milk cheeses.
In Switzerland, Jumi sells from forty to fifty kinds of cheese depending on the season, while in the United States it sells eight kinds of cheese year-round. Every cheese sold in the United States has to be aged sixty days prior to export. Its flagship cheese, Schlossberger Alt, is a firmer Alpine cheese that is aged from eighteen to twenty-three months and has a fat content of 45%.
In the US Sam Frank and Poul Price have helped Jumi grow its presence, wholesaling to retailers, restaurants, and other businesses. Both Frank and Price, who have backgrounds in cheesemaking, cooking, and farmers markets, see an increasing demand for artisanal European cheeses. As consumers here become more familiar with the different types of cheeses and their characteristics, the appetite for them grows. Jumi’s goal is to change the way we think of Swiss cheese.