Baker Cheese celebrates 100th year

Wisconsin State Farmer
At the age of 16, Frank Baker learned the art of cheesemaking through an apprenticeship at the Winkler Cheese Factory in Plymouth, WI. Six years later in 1916, he purchased a cheese factory in St. Cloud, WI, which is where Baker Cheese still operates today.

St. Cloud — As kids, the current generation of Baker Cheese executives spent much of their free time in the same cheese factory where their great-grandfather, Frank Baker, developed his craft.

Now one of the largest and globally-competitive string cheese manufacturers in the world, the current leadership team leans on the same knowledge and passion that drove Frank following the purchase of his factory in St. Cloud in 1916. With state-of-the-art manufacturing processes in place, the company still employs many of their original, all-natural production methods using locally-sourced, farm-fresh milk that is converted to high quality cheese in less than 48 hours.

With the rise in American consumerism during post World War II, Baker Cheese was producing mozzarella in 5-pound loaves and 40 pound blocks, and was the first in the Midwest to produce string cheese. Now a top 3 producer of string cheese worldwide, Baker Cheese has become an industry leader in the innovation and design of string cheese manufacturing equipment; pioneering the extrusion process.

After 100 years in business, Baker Cheese produces what has been recognized as the best string cheese in the United States. As one of 2,500 cheese manufacturers in Wisconsin in 1916, Baker Cheese is one of only 125 in the state. This family-owned and -operated business competes globally and has become renowned in the industry for their role as a premier supplier for private label string cheese manufacturing services, a producer of retail products and a company committed to supporting local dairy farmers.

“Our team has worked hard to accomplish the innovative vision our founder, Frank, had for the company one hundred years ago,” said Brian Baker, president of Baker Cheese. “Our company will remain focused on our role in the evolution of the dairy manufacturing industry and producing the highest quality, award-winning string cheese for our retail and private label customers worldwide. We are confident that this is the recipe to position the future generations of Baker employees for success.”

The current Baker leadership team understands their prominent role in the development and growth of the dairy and cheese manufacturing industry in Wisconsin over the past 100 years. With a major rebuild to the original plant in 1999 and several expansions since, the team looks ahead to the next 25 years as another expansion is planned for 2017 that will increase the employee service areas, warehouse and finished goods cooling areas.

In recognition of the company’s 100th Anniversary, Baker Cheese established the “Baker Cheese 100-Year Community Give Back” campaign. Throughout 201626 Baker Cheese employees’ charities of choice will receive a $200 donation from the company, supporting a variety community organizations and causes. Additionally, a commemorative 100th Anniversary holiday cheese box will be available for purchase in the Baker Country Cheese Store throughout the 2016 holiday season.

For more information about the Baker family’s cheese manufacturing legacy and the 100-year celebration, visit

Baker Cheese is a fourth generation, family-owned, cheese manufacturer based in the Wisconsin town of St. Cloud.  A tradition of exceptional service, quality and award winning cheese are the main reasons the company has maintained its Wisconsin cheese heritage since 1916.  The company’s string cheese is marketed in the Upper Midwest under the Baker Cheese label, as well as around the world under many different private labels.