Mother Noella Marcellino and the Promise of Cheese

For most people, the first images that come to mind at the mention of biodiversity are of wild fauna: swarms of tropical fish around a coral reef, or birds-of-paradise in the rainforest. Slow Food has been working for decades to broaden that image to all the domesticated plant varieties and animal breeds which human beings have raised since we started farming.

Yet there’s another layer to biodiversity, which, though essential to the cheesemaking process, often goes completely unnoticed: the invisible biodiversity of microorganisms. We discussed the importance of this hidden world with Mother Noella Marcellino, a cheesemaker, microbiologist and Benedictine nun from the United States.

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