September 9, 2009

Cheese maker insures grader’s nose

A British cheese manufacturer said it has taken out an $83 million insurance policy on its master cheese grader's nose.

Officials with Wyke Farms in Somerset, England, said cheddar expert Nigel Pooley's nose, which he has been using in the cheese business since 1963, is now covered by Lloyds of London, the U.K. Express reported Wednesday.

As an industry veteran with a naturally honed palate, Nigel plays an integral role in ensuring the quality of every batch of Wyke Farms' award-winning cheddar that leaves the farm, said Richard Clothier, managing director for Wyke Farms. It may seem a bit unusual to go to such great lengths -- something that's typically reserved for celebrities, but then again, we've never been afraid to stray from the norm in order produce the best farmhouse cheddar possible.

In fact, you could say that Nigel is a bit of a celebrity around our farm, he said.

Jonathan Thomas, an insurer for Lloyds, said the firm has previously insured other noses.

Mr. Pooley breaks new ground as our first cheese nose, but perfume and wine noses we have insured in the past justify similar quality control value, Thomas said.