PITTSFORD, N.Y. — Wegmans Food Markets announced a collaboration with Cornell University to foster artisanal cheesemakers, and plans to source more cheese from New York.

The partnership with Cornell’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences includes funding of $360,000 for a three-year pilot program to create a cheesemaking curriculum for entrepreneurs and larger cheese producers.

One of the participating cheesemakers. Photo courtesy of Cornell/ Alex KoeberleIn addition, Wegmans will start selling more New York-made artisanal cheeses, beginning in its store here and expanding to other stores.

“It is our goal to help grow the artisan cheese business by bringing unique and different cheeses to our customers,” Cathy Gaffney, Wegmans director of cheese and deli departments, said in a statement. “They have asked for more local selections. By combining the milk quality produced in New York state, our truly passionate cheesemakers, and Cornell University, we have all the components to take the industry to the next level while listening to our customers’ requests.”

The retailer said it was also making the switch to New York cheesemakers for its private-label cheddars.

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