Quebec firm abandons lost cheese

La Fromagerie Boivin has given up on finding 800 kg of cheese worth $50,000 that it dropped into the Saguenay fjord, north of Quebec City, hoping to make it taste better.

A Quebec cheese company has finally given up on finding $50,000 worth of cheese it sank underwater in an attempt to make it taste better.

Last year, La Fromagerie Boivin dropped 800 kg of cheese into the water of the Saguenay fjord, north of Quebec City.

Letting it sit 50 metres underwater was supposed to produce a cheese that would taste unique, but the company had major trouble finding its sunken cheese.

Divers and high-tech tracking equipment were used to search for the lost fromage.

"It's a mystery," said master diver Pierre Dufour, who assisted in the hunt. "All we know is that the cheese is no longer where it was left."

The company has given up hope of finding the cheese and is writing off its $50,000 value.

"It got too expensive," said cheesemaker Luc Boivin. "At some point, you can't be crazy."

Even if the cheese had been found, there were doubts about whether it could ever be sold.

In July, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency raised concerns about the sunken cheese. It said Boivin was breaking food safety laws because the cheese hadn't been analyzed at various stages of the aging process. That meant it couldn't be sold through retail outlets.