The deal will see Lye Cross Farm ship its certified 100% Grass-fed Organic Sharp Cheddar Cheese to the US.
The product will initially be launched in 30 grocery stores in California although the company expected to see its cheese in up to 1,000 stores by the end of 2019.
The cheese has been made specifically for the US market after the business discovered that US buyers prefer creamier cheeses with a more distinct yellow colouring.
Lye Cross Farm received funding support from Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Department for International Trade (DIT) to attend the Natural Products Expo West in Southern California in March 2019, showcase its new product and meet other potential buyers.
The business is owned by the Alvis family, who produce a selection of Cheddar, Double Gloucester and Red Leicester and have been making West Country cheese since 1952. The family owns three dairy farms, which are home to the 1,200 dairy cows that provide the milk used in their selection of cheeses.
The company has been exporting its cheeses for around 20 years and now a third of its total cheese sales now come from exported goods. It trades in more than 40 countries worldwide with its latest wins in Germany, Poland, the Maldives and Austria.
Ben Hutchins, sales and marketing director, said: “2018 was a monumental year for our business. Last year, our director and owner, John Alvis, received an OBE for services to cheese exports, farming and rural communities and we’ve recently hired an additional exports administrator. With so many milestones achieved, it seemed like the right time to expand our operations in the US.
“We’ve been working with the team at DIT for the past eight years and our International Trade Adviser has always been on hand to offer guidance and support on how to enter new markets and attend international trade shows. There is nothing quite like meeting a potential buyer face-to-face and having them try your products first-hand. There is support out there, so my advice to any business would be to tap into the global appetite for British-made goods.”