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History

Menorca has always been linked to stockbreeding and cheese production, even in prehistoric times, as proved by the remains of pottery utensils dated from 3000 BC, used for its elaboration. Greeks, Carthaginians and Romans stocked up on meat and cheese from Menorca and later on, during the Islamic invasion, Minorcan milk and cheese were exported to the African coasts.

Since the British domination, and even before, Mahon’s port was the key element of the trade with Orient. In export commercial transactions, naval authorities added the word "Mahon" to products to indicate their origin, hence the "Queso Mahon” guarantee of origin was established. Such geographical denomination was legally established in 1985 for the cow cheese produced in Menorca which complied with the legal requirements of production and ripening required by the Regulatory Board of the aforementioned guarantee of origin.

After the Civil War, in 1939, Josep Cardona, known as "Bep de Torralba," and his family founded "Quesos Torralba”, a small family business in the heart of the town of Alaior, in Sa Bolla street. Next to the house where Bep and his family lived, they owned some premises where they stored the cheese that, once mature, they sold to "El Caserio", a dairy company, and to different shops around Minorca and Majorca islands. The cheese was produced by the farmers of the area, with whom Bep exchanged food; he offered them oil, salt, sugar and fabrics and received turkeys, milk, cheese, potatoes, tomatoes and vegetables that those farmers had cultivated in their land.

Little by little, the business of ripening and sale of the “Quesos Torralba” grew and the amount of customers grew with it. Due to the need of more space for the ripening process of cheese, in 1964 "Bep de Torralba"'s family moved her business to a larger warehouse, which had drier areas to ensure the preservation of the qualities of the cheese. This store was located in “Carretera nova” road, where we can still find it today. From its creation until nowadays the business has been managed by two more generations. First, by Bep’s son, called Jaume Cardona, and nowadays by his grandson, Nicolas Cardona.



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