The origins of Reblochon date back to the 13th century, in the Alpine pastures of the Thônes valley, where it all started through acts of secret pilfering!
At the time, land owners – often monks or nobles – exercised a “droit d’ociège” right over farmers who farmed the mountain pastures. This usage fee was collected once a year, and was based on the number of pots of milk produced by the herd in a day. The quantity of butter and cheese that could be produced from it was deducted from it.
The latter had to pay a tax to the landowner according to the quantity of milk produced per day.
On the day that quantities were checked, the farmer cleverly only did a partial milking in order to pay less.
As soon as the inspector left, they did a second milking. There was hardly a great quantity of milk left, but it was very rich in cream, ideal for making cheese.
Reblochon therefore owes its name to this minor deceit, locally called “la Rebloche” in a patois dialect, with “Re-blocher” in French meaning to pinch the cow’s udder a second time.
At the beginning of the 20th century, less than 40 tons of Reblochon were produced per year. The development of railways, tourism and winter sports rapidly increased Reblochon's fame across France.
In 1958, Reblochon producers were amongst the first to obtain the Protected Designation of Origin label that protects the production area and recognises the connection between the lands to Reblochon’s origins.