Cheese is one of the most versatile food items in the world. It is found in the cuisines of most, if not all, cultures and boasts a variety of applications, where it can be both the star of the flavor show or a supporting act, helping to elevate flavors, textures and complexity.
With its many rich, salty, savory, and sweet applications, cheese can find itself as a key component or simply one small part of breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and snack time.
The Alouette brand of cheese was introduced to the United States in the early 1970s, when the Savencia Saveur et Specialites, a cheese maker with a reputation for quality cheese craftsmanship based in Viroflay, France, saw an opportunity to market their specialty cheeses in America. Savencia Saveur et Specialites, which released its first cheese in 1956, Caprice des Dieux, had already solidified its place in European and some Asian markets, entering into the U.S. market to further its international reach.
Building upon the company’s rich cheese making expertise, deeply rooted in its French heritage, Savencia Saveur et Specialites, under the Alouette name, began working with a Pennsylvania-based company in New Holland, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. With access to some of the finest dairy in the region, drawing from local Amish dairy farms, the first Alouette spreadable cheese was introduced to American markets in 1974, using only the freshest ingredients and the most traditional of processes.
In 1978, Savencia Saveur et Specialites acquired the Smithfield Brand and, in 1987, purchased Kolb-Lena Cheese and its facility, a company that was founded in 1895 in Kolb-Lena, Illinois. In 1990, in order to bring all of the Savencia Saveur et Specialites entities in the U.S. together, Alouette Cheese USA LLC was formed, acting as a subsidiary of Savencia Saveur et Specialites. In July 1997, Alouette Cheese opened its City of Industry, California plant, to produce its cream cheese.
Alouette has since become the third largest cream cheese manufacturer in the United States and continues to break ground on new flavor combinations, creating innovative flavor profiles. “Alouette Cheese USA has always been pioneering categories. We were the first premium spreadable cheese flavored Garlic and Herb in this country. We were the first goat pyramid. We try to keep everything we do very special and well differentiated,” explains Emmanuelle Hofer Louis, Vice President of Marketing with Alouette.
What began as a small, family-owned dairy farm in France, Savencia Saveur et Specialites is now an international name in cheese. With production facilities in 24 countries, the brand has become an international powerhouse for specialty and spreadable cheese. Both the Savencia Saveur et Specialites and the Alouette names have become synonymous with quality, winning a number of flavor awards and competing in competitions such as ChefsBest and the United States Championship Cheese Contest.
Premium Product Line and Flavorology
Alouette boasts extensive retail offerings and has also established a presence in the food services industry. By adopting best practices from France, using the guidance, leadership and expertise of the French cheese making team, and combining quality ingredients to develop the most unique flavors, Alouette creates French inspired cheese crafted to the highest American quality standards, employing environmentally sustainable practices in doing so.
The company’s premium spreadable cheese comes in a variety of flavors including: the #1 best selling Garlic and Herb; Spinach and Artichoke; Smoky Jalapeno; Sun Dried Tomato and Basil; Flame-Roasted Red Peppers; reduced fat options; seasonal flavors such as Vanilla Bean Cheesecake, Pumpkin Spice, and Cranberry Apple Spice; and new flavors such as Toasted Everything with Sea Salt and Zesty Ginger and Spring Onion.
Alouette’s Cheddar Spreads also come in a variety of flavors such as Sharp, Bacon, Buffalo, Wasabi, and the new additions of New York Cheddar with Sour Cream and Chives, and Brown Ale. In addition, Alouette offers Brie; Crème de Brie in Original, Garlic and Herbs, and Smoky Bourbon; Crème Fraîche; and Feta, Blue, Gorgonzola and Goat Crumble Cheeses.
Le Bon Dip, a new offering in Alouette’s innovative approach to smart snacking, is a wholesome dip made with a blend of cheese, chunky, visible pieces of ripe vegetables, and a touch of Greek Yogurt, boasting 25 percent fewer calories than a standard serving of hummus. At only 45 calories per serving, these dips come in Basil, Zucchini and Parmesan, Fire Roasted Vegetables, Zesty Garden Salsa, and Roasted Red Pepper and Chickpea, and taste great no matter what you are dipping!
In addition to items geared for sharing and entertaining, Alouette is now offering consumers an opportunity to enjoy their products in individual, snack sized offerings, satisfying the need for indulgence and flavor on the go with both shareable and individual portions. With only 40 calories per serving, Le Petit Fromage comes in Garlic and Herb, Garden Salsa, Basil and Parmesan, and Cucumber and Dill varieties, and is made with a blend of cheese, yogurt and the most flavorful vegetables and spices.
Alouette works to bring both indulgence and balance to its consumers, finding ways to infuse indulgent flavors into its cheese products while creating smart snacks with a reasonable caloric content. As a company, Alouette continues to develop new products, finding new ways to satisfy consumers.
Alouette carefully selects only the finest ingredients at their peak flavor to incorporate into its premium cheese. Utilizing the culinary skill of the team’s Executive Chef, who has over fifteen years of experience working in the finest, world-class restaurants, Alouette has created a Flavorology that can suit any palate and satisfy even the toughest critic, marrying simplicity and complexity in its flavor delivery systems.
“We have a very unique French heritage that comes with a lot of know-how when it comes to cheese making. In the same way, part of our DNA, our French DNA, is the unique ability to blend ingredients to create flavors,” Hofer Louis shares. Alouette maintains the highest standards which are upheld to ensure consistent quality output. Flavors are not simply added to Alouette’s product lines; rather, they are blended to maximize flavor output, paying full compliment to the cheese.
A Culture of Quality and Success
By understanding consumer demand in the marketplace, Alouette Cheese markets wholesome, smart snacking options for everyone to enjoy. “The last two years have been really good, proving our ability to really get innovation out of the door,” says Hofer Louis, attributing this to the company’s robust and technologically advanced R & D systems that enable substantial product testing and incorporation of consumer feedback.
Beyond the extensive innovation that is employed, growth at Alouette is also being driven by the passion of employees, creating a positive culture and environment in which their cheese is made. A drive for quality and success is integral to all that is done at every stage of operations at Alouette, with David Issenberg, Vice President of Industrial Sales with Alouette, citing the “incredible culture” at Alouette as a main reason for the company’s continued growth and success.
“I think that because we have such a great culture, that our employees take pride in crafting delicious cheese and our people want to service our customers. We want to go out there and help to create new ideas. That passion really sets us apart; our passion and our people,” he believes, speaking of a craftsmanship and quality flavor that cannot be duplicated.
“We have master cheese makers and we have people who have been working at our plants for a long time who live and breathe it. It is fascinating to watch them and the attention to detail that they put into it,” Issenberg shares, speaking of employees of Alouette who take great pride in the work that they do and the quality that they output.
Moving forward, Alouette fully intends on further harnessing its passion for innovation and quality, continuing to expand its product offerings, both at the consumer level and on the national accounts side of the food services industry. Supporting events such as National Cheesecake Day, Alouette not only wants to advance its own products, but also to collaborate with the food services industry as a whole, sharing the team’s passion for flavor, quality, and the versatility of cheese.
“That’s really it. We want to be a part of the evolution of foodservice and to offer unique flavors to the American consumer,” describes Issenberg. Today, Alouette Cheese can be found in a number of retail locations, in restaurants and food manufacturers, providing an expansive opportunity for consumers worldwide to enjoy Alouette Cheese products.