Masthead for CCPE Newsletter

171 days to the inaugural Certified Cheese Professional Exam: August 1, 2012 in Raleigh, NC!

About this Newsletter

The first Certified Cheese Professional Exam (CCPE) takes place this summer. The exam evaluates candidates' understanding of core competencies common to the specialty cheese industry. Individuals who pass earn the title of ACS Certified Cheese Professional (ACS CCP).


Leading up to the exam, ACS will share important updates and helpful tips for certification prospects via this monthly e-newsletter. If you don't wish to receive monthly CCPE News, you may unsubscribe at the bottom of this email.

Join Supporters of the Inaugural CCPE


ACS is grateful to the many supporters that are making the first CCPE possible. Don't miss the one-time opportunity to join this group of industry leaders and align your brand with the ground-breaking exam. 


See our menu of sponsorship opportunities to find the level of recognition that's right for you!  Opportunities are also available to jointly sponsor the CCPE™ with the Annual ACS Conference & Competition, or American Cheese Month. 


To learn more, email Rebecca Orozco at the ACS office or call 720-328-2788 x301. 


Benefactor Sponsors


Steward Sponsor

Dairy Connection




Champion Sponsors



Friends of Certification
  • Casselula Cheese & Wine Café
  • The Cheese School of San Francisco
  • The Concord Cheese Shop
  • Culture Magazine
  • Saxelby Cheesemongers
  • Trevor Tondro Photography 


The following individuals and organizations have also contributed to the CCPE:

  • Burgerville
  • Cellars at Jasper Hill
  • Fromartharie Incorporated
  • Stellar Brands
  • Sweet Home Farm c/o Alyce Birchenough
  • Vilutis and Co, Inc.
  • Bruce Vandenberg
  • Debbie Byrne
  • Laura Werlin
  • Rachel Riggs
  • Sadie E. Kendall
  • Sasha Davies
  • Sue Sturman
  • Susan Buhler
  • Zoe Brickley
Don't Lose Your Space! Pay Your Exam Fee to Complete Your Registration Today


If your application has been approved for the CCPE this summer, congratulations! Your next step toward taking the exam is to pay the registration fee of $500 for ACS members or $650 for non-members.  


As the 2012 exam is filled, we encourage you to pay your registration fee as soon as possible to ensure that your space is secured. All payments are due by June 30.  


If you haven't paid your exam registration fee yet, you can pay online now. 


The 2012 Certified Cheese Professional Exam is Full!
Applications are Now Being Accepted for 2013


The inaugural Certified Cheese Professional™ Exam has filled to capacity! If you have not yet applied for the 2012 CCPE™, please note that ACS is now accepting applications for the 2013 exam. The 2013 exam will be held immediately prior to the 2013 ACS Conference & Competition (date and location to be announced soon. 


Should any openings become available for the 2012 exam due to deferrals or cancellations, ACS will offer spaces to individuals who are approved to take the exam in 2013 on a rolling basis, based on the order in which applications are received. 


This Week! Virtual Roundtable on Retailer Best Practices


The second session in our 2012 Winter Webinar Series, Retailer Best Practices: Virtual Roundtable, will take place this Wednesday, February 15 at 9 AM Mountain Time. Whether or not you plan to take the Certified Cheese Professional Exam, we're sure you'll benefit from the ideas and experiences shared by retailers in this interactive session. 




February 15, 2012

9:00 AM - 10:30 AM Mountain Time 


Following-up on work from the 2011 Annual Conference, ACS members are developing a comprehensive Standards & Practices guide for cheese retailers and distributors to promote food safety. To fully encapsulate all of our needs as an industry, we will want to have as many people as possible bring their questions, challenges, wisdom, suggestions, and feedback to the session so we can build and share together to identify key quality and safety standards. In addition to an expansive compendium of evolving FDA regulations, the resulting guide will reflect the best practices set forth by industry leaders - like you! This session is hosted by Hans Kunisch from GreenLeaf and Jonathan Richardson from Zuercher & Co.  


Recording of "Storage Temperatures Necessary to Maintain Cheese Safety" is Now Online


More than 100 members tuned into the first session in our 2012 Winter Webinar Series, Storage Temperatures Necessary to Maintain Cheese Safety, led by Marianne Smukowski of the Wisconsin Center for Dairy Research.   

If you missed the webinar, or if you simply wish to watch it again, you can now login to the ACS website to view the recorded session online. Once you are logged in, you can also view recordings from previous ACS winter webinars, including: 

  • Risk Reduction in Cheesemaking Facilities
  • Preparing a HACCP Plan
  • Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and Product Liability
Find Cheese Educators in ACS's New Online Database


ACS has updated and enhanced its searchable database of cheese educators to serve as a resource for those seeking to expand their cheese knowledge and expertise. The educators listed in the database provide learning opportunities ranging from consumer-oriented tastings and cheesemaking classes, to advanced training for cheesemongers and university-level academic courses. Please note that ACS does not endorse the content taught by any of these educators.


If you would like to have your business listed in the database, or if you are already listed and would like changes made to your record, please email ACS with:

  • Company Name and Address
  • Website URL 
  • Email Address
  • Phone Number
  • Description of educational opportunities offered   
Prepare for CCPE with ACS's Expanded Body of Knowledge


ACS has posted an expanded cheese industry Body of Knowledge online to serve as a tool for those preparing for the Certified Cheese Professional Exam™, as well as anyone who is considering taking the exam in the future. The Body of Knowledge outlines the knowledge areas that professionals in the cheese industry must draw upon in their everyday work, from the time that cheese leaves the producer to the moment it reaches the consumer.

The Body of Knowledge includes eleven domains listed below. Exam-takers should carefully review it to ensure adequate knowledge across each domain, and focus exam preparation on the domains with which they are least familiar.

Body of Knowledge Domains:
  1. Raw Materials for Cheesemaking 
  2. Cheese Making Processes 
  3. Cheese Ripening (Affinage) 
  4. Cheese Categories and Types 
  5. Cheese Assessment and Evaluation 
  6. Cheese Storage and Handling 
  7. Cheese Distribution and Transport 
  8. Cheese Marketing/Merchandising/Selling 
  9. Cheese Service 
  10. Cheese Nutrition 
  11. Regulations and Regulators 
Certification Q&A

Each month in this newsletter, ACS will answer your questions about the CCPE. If you have questions that you would like answered in future editions,
email ACS.


Q:  I want to take the exam this year, but it is filled to capacity. Is there a wait list?

A:  There is no wait list, but ACS is continuing to accept applications for the CCPE™, and spots will be offered on a rolling basis as space permits. The 2012 exam is filled, so all new applicants will be considered for the 2013 exam. If any spaces become available in 2012 due to deferrals or cancellations, ACS will offer them to individuals who have been accepted for 2013 based on the order in which applications were received. We expect that some spaces for 2012 will open up, and encourage interested individuals to apply now.

I have already been accepted to take the exam in 2012, but I just found out that I won't be able to take the exam this year. Do I have to reapply next year?


A:  No. Your acceptance is valid for one year after the 2012 exam date. You may defer taking the exam until 2013, without reapplying. Simply email the Certification Eligibility Committee and ask for a deferral. Once your request is approved, you will be formally notified by ACS, and you will be placed into the next exam seating.  

Q:  I missed the latest session in the Winter Webinar Series, and I would like to review the content. Is there any way to access content from the session?


A:  Each session in the Winter Webinar Series is recorded. If you miss a session, you can expect to find the recording online within two weeks of the session date. The recording from our February 1 webinar, Storage Temperatures Necessary to Maintain Cheese Safety, is now viewable online. You can also view recordings from 2011 webinars, which may also be useful in preparing for the CCPE. Live and recorded webinars are available exclusively to current ACS members. If your membership has lapsed, you can renew for 2012 by calling Jana Hemphill at 720-328-2788. 


A Test Taker's Bibliography 


ACS and the Certification Committee have developed a bibliography of resources to read while preparing for the CCPE™. Each month leading up to the exam, we'll highlight several resources in this newsletter. Depending on your level of expertise, some or all of these publications may be useful as you prepare for the exam.  


  • Fundamentals of Cheese Science by Fox, McSweeney, Cogan, Guinee, 2000 (ISBN 978-0834212602). Fundamentals of Cheese Science provides comprehensive coverage of the scientific aspects of cheese, emphasizing fundamental principles. The book's 23 chapters cover the chemistry and microbiology of milk for cheesemaking, starter cultures, coagulation of milk by enzymes or by acidification, the microbiology and biochemistry of cheese ripening, the flavor and rheology of cheese, processed cheese, cheese as a food ingredient, public health and nutritional aspects of cheese, and various methods used for the analysis of cheese. The book contains copious references to other texts and review articles. This broadly based resource is written for personnel involved in various production and quality control functions in the cheese industry, senior undergraduates, and post-graduate students


  • Cheese Essentials by Laura Werlin, 2001 (ISBN 978-1584796275). After mapping out the basics for navigating this daunting environment, Werlin acquaints you with the cheese fundamentals: the different kinds of milk used, information on rinds and mold, and tips on cooking with cheese, as well as a few words on Werlin's passion-the American artisanal cheese movement. The heart of the book consists of individual chapters on the eight styles of cheese: fresh, semi-soft, soft-ripened, surface-ripened, semi-hard, hard, blue, and washed-rind. Following Werlin's guidance, you'll soon be able to identify a cheese by how it looks-and have a good idea of what that cheese will taste like before you even take a bite.

Connect to ACS

Stay connected to ACS no matter where you are! Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (#cheesesociety), LinkedIn, or our member networking site, CheeseWire. Get the latest updates from the cheese community, connect with fellow cheesemakers, retailers and enthusiasts, and tell us what's happening in your world.  

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