President, Comté, on the culture of cheese, the North Pole and public speaking

What was your first-ever job? I was a dairy technician on several farms where I analysed cows’ milk quality.

What’s been your worst job interview? Fortunately, I have never had one!

What was the first music single you bought? Adieu Jolie Candy by Jean FranÇois Michael, in 1968.

How do you describe your job to your mates? In 2002 I was elected as president of the Comté Cheese Association, but I don’t make all the decisions. We listen to one another before reaching an agreement. For us, it’s more than just the management of Comté cheese production, but about preserving our passionate artisans, our extraordinary countryside, our culture and know-how. 

What is the most rewarding part of your job? When collective decisions are bearers of success. Representing a united and virtuous food supply chain gives me the energy to champion Comté cheese. 

What is the least rewarding part? When someone criticises our positioning or our actions. 

What is your motto? When you love something, you don’t count the cost or the time. 

If you were allowed one dream perk, what would it be? I would live several months in the North Pole, but no more! Because even though I’m used to snow and harsh winter, I would miss the Jura Mountains too much. 

If you could change one thing in grocery, what would it be? Reduce restrictions on food labelling because it prohibits consumers from making a truly autonomous purchasing decision. Greater leniency would give food companies more space and visibility for their products to communicate their real quality.

What luxury would you have on a desert island? For me, it has to be a selection of good wines and fresh fruit juices…and of course a piece of Comté cheese.

What has been the most embarrassing moment in your life? It was the first time that I spoke in front of a large audience when I was only 21 years old, and I hadn’t mastered my subject well enough! 

Which celebrity would you most like to work with and why? Genuinely none at all. Celebrities are here to make us dream and won’t necessarily help and support us in our work at Comté.