French Have Field Day With Whole Foods Cheese Map

The inaccuracies are inspiring widespread sass
By Elizabeth Armstrong Moore,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 8, 2017 7:40 AM CDT
French Have Field Day With Whole Foods Cheese Map
Bernard Roques a refiner of Societe company smells a Roquefort cheese as they mature in a cellar in Roquefort, southwestern France, Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2009.   (AP Photo/Bob Edme)

In cheese-loving France, there's plenty of regional pride for which places first made, or exclusively produce, each fromage. So when Whole Foods displayed a French cheese map with glaring inaccuracies, an online melee ensued, reports Eater. It all started when French expat Mikaël, who lives in DC, on Monday posted a picture on Twitter of the map at a Whole Foods store he shopped at while in Detroit, with the global refrain, "OMG!!!" He says he first thought it was simply a local snafu, but when he returned home to DC, the same poster was on display. It was so off people replied in droves, and a certain Philippe-Arnaud tweeted a picture of plastic-wrapped slices of American cheese overlaid on a US map, captioned, "How we see the map of American 'Cheeses'."

To the dismay of many who weighed in, Camembert was identified as hailing from Montpellier in the south instead of Normandy in the north; the sheep's milk cheese Ossau-Iraty from the central Pays de la Loire instead of basque country in the southwest; and Fourme d'Ambert Terre des Volcans, a storied blue cheese, from the southeast instead of central Auvergne, reports the Telegraph. But while these and other inaccuracies caused a stink, the French foreign ministry attempted to restore order with its own tweet: "The geography may be a bit off, but it's great to see that @WholeFoods carries (and enjoys!) French cheeses!" The chain has since apologized and removed the posters. (Whole Foods once tried to sell asparagus water, too.)

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