Our cheddar has been part of Orkney’s larder for over 70 years.

Our Story

The cheese making tradition in Orkney goes back hundreds of years. As a means of supplementing their income, crofting families would turn their surplus milk into cheese.

Wartime Beginnings

The original Creamery was established in 1946 as a consequence of the milk supply having increased during the Second World War. Our islanders were joined by 60,000 service men and women and 550 prisoners of war and our farmers worked hard to meet the increase in demand for milk.

The creamery was set up in a Nissen hut which had been part of an RAF camp just outside Kirkwall. Formerly the Garrison theatre, the building was converted for cheese production in 1946.

A hard cheese in traditional clothed cylinders, blocks and wheels was made to begin with. Due to an increase in surplus milk, a switch to more modern production methods and to a cheddar recipe was made in 1958.

The cheddar recipe was modified with our dry stir technique in 1984, after a period of trialling this innovative variation to the traditional cheddar recipe.

In 2001, Orkney Cheese moved to its’ current, purpose built creamery on Crowness Road in Kirkwall.

Today, Orkney Cheese is produced using modern facilities whilst still maintaining the traditional recipe and processes that make our cheddartimeless and unique.