Harvey Cheese donates half a tonne of cheese to vulnerable

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Briana FioreHarvey-Waroona Reporter
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Penny and Robert St Duke donate 500kg of gourmet cheese to Food Bank and Meals on Wheels.
Camera IconPenny and Robert St Duke donate 500kg of gourmet cheese to Food Bank and Meals on Wheels. Credit: Picture: Briana Fiore

The generous team at Harvey Cheese has donated a whopping 500kg of gourmet cheese to Food Bank and Meals on Wheels in Harvey this month.

Owners Robert and Penny St Duke made the decision to donate their dairy products after the COVID-19 pandemic left them with an abundance of cheese.

The pair had already ramped up the factory’s Easter production when the coronavirus restrictions came into play.

“We had started making the cheese when the travel ban announcements were made,” Mrs St Duke said.

“It was unfortunately too late to halt production and we were left with a lot of cheese.”

She said 65 per cent of all the cheese factory’s traffic was through the front door.

“We heavily rely on the tourism industry and the traffic from South Western Highway, especially across the Easter break.

“With the regional travel bans and boundary checkpoints, the usual Easter sales were not possible.”

Mr St Duke said soft cheeses were the problem, as they only have a lifespan of 49 days.

The cheesemaker said his business had lost almost $15,000 in cheese sales in the wake of the virus, but was glad to be able to help charities in need of food.

We didn’t want to throw out the cheese and we are proud to be helping others.

Robert St Duke

“Food Bank and Meals on Wheels were ecstatic with our cheese donations, I would encourage other businesses to donate their products instead of throwing them out.”

Mrs St Duke said she had received many phone calls thanking them for their donations.

“One lady from Meals on Wheels called us and thanked us for the treat.

“The products we have been donating have all been gourmet, like Robert’s lemon myrtle brie cheese.”

The Harvey Cheese is available in independent supermarkets and at the Wokalup premises.

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