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Middle Eastern buyers visit Wisconsin cheese factories amid trade war

MADISON (WKOW) — Wisconsin cheese companies are reaching out to buyers overseas amid the trade war because they say it’s taking a toll on the dairy industry.

More than a dozen buyers from middle eastern companies visited Madison and Mount Horeb to see what the Dairy State has to offer.

Kirti Meghnani, from Dubai, leads retail procurement for a chain of stores and said he was surprised by the amount of production Wisconsin has to offer.

“We visited two states and I was shocked to see how much cheese is made in Wisconsin,” said Meghnani.

Wisconsin Department of Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) reached out to other countries last year too, but as the trade war heats up they feel this opportunity for cheese sellers is more important than ever.

“The tariffs have restricted some of the markets and that’s why we’re searching for others that have been previously untapped,” said Lisa Stout, International Trade Representative for DATCP.

Buyers said tariffs are not hurting them as much but for Daniel Schmitt of Shullsburg Creamery said it’s been an adjustment.

“What we try and tell our customers we’re building relationships and politics change over time but we’re still here we’ve been doing it for years,” said Schmitt.

WQOW Staff

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