There’s a new exam out there designed to test your cheese prowess, but instead of testing your skills in cheese industry careers, this one takes a look at just how well your cheese senses are working. The American Cheese Society (ACS) is launching a certification exam, the ACS T.A.S.T.E. Test™ (Technical, Aesthetic, Sensory, Tasting Evaluation), which evaluates cheese professionals ability to determine cheese condition and quality, as well as evaluate cheese flavor, body, texture, and appearance.
“We are excited that our T.A.S.T.E. Test™ will provide yet another opportunity for cheese professionals to showcase their expertise and differentiate their skillset,” said Nora Weiser, Executive Director. “It also sets the standard with a common lexicon for how the industry defines and describes cheese.”
The T.A.S.T.E. Test is the second industry certification exam offered by ACS—the first of which, the ACS CCP Exam®, evaluates candidates’ understanding of core competencies common across the majority of cheese industry jobs. According to a press relese, the T.A.S.T.E. Test is focused exclusively on the sensory and organoleptic assessment of cheese, and promotes the standardization of cheese professionals’ approach to communicating about these aspects of cheese. The hope here, according to ACS, is to benefit stakeholders at all levels of the cheese production and distribution chain, from cheesemakers to consumers. Individuals who pass the exam will earn the title of ACS Certified Cheese Sensory Evaluator™, or ACS CCSE™.
The T.A.S.T.E. Test™ is divided into the following three sections:
Candidates are evaluated against a rigorous and widely respected standard developed using methods employed by the American Dairy Standards Association. Those individuals who pass the exam will receive a lapel pin, embroidered patch, and a certificate, as well as the right to call themselves an ACS CCSE.
The first ACS T.A.S.T.E. Test will take place on July 25, 2018 in Pittsburgh, PA, during Forged in Cheese, the 35th Annual ACS Conference & Competition. Applications will be accepted from February 1 through March 30, 2018, or until spaces are filled. All candidates must meet a set of minimum eligibility requirements including work and/or education hours in the industry, or they must be an ACS Certified Cheese Professional® in good standing. Due to the technical nature of its content, the exam is not intended for enthusiasts.
To learn more about the ACS T.A.S.T.E. Test™, visit http://www.cheesesociety.org/certification/taste-test/ or visit the American Cheese Society’s booth #4711 at the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco, CA.