Petra Kassun-Mutch

After 18 years in progressive positions in the publishing industry in Canada and the US, and after 7 years as President of McGraw Hill Ryerson’s Higher Education Division in Canada, she left a successful corporate career at the top of her game to pursue her dream of starting a social purpose enterprise in a rural community and founded the Fifth Town Artisan Cheese Company.

The Fifth Town Artisan Cheese Company is an award winning artisan dairy focused on making artisan goat and sheep milk cheese using locally produced milk from selected, LFP certified farms in Prince Edward County. The 4800 sq ft dairy on a 20 acre site is Canada’s first Platinum LEED manufacturing facility and the only Platinum LEED certified dairy in the world. In its first 9 months of operations, Fifth Town cheeses won critical acclaim at several North America wide and Canadian cheese competitions. Now after three 3 years of cheese making, FT has garnered over 30 cheese awards including Grand Champion ribbons on several occasions Royal Winter Fair and overall Grand Champion Specialty Cheese Maker for highest score in 2009 at the British Empire Cheese Competition. Just this August, FT’s aged goat cheddar took second place among all cheddars in the 1 year old category at the American Cheese Society plus several other ribbons. There were over 1800 cheese entries in this competition from across North America.

In addition to founding Fifth Town, Petra also led and co-founded a group of 10 who were interested in reviving small scale dairying in Ontario to create the Ontario Cheese Society. Thought it started with just 10 members, it grew to over 160 members in 2009. Petra continues to serve as Board Chair for the group and the OCS is now moving to become the Canadian Cheese Society.

Petra has a B. A. Honours in Journalism & Mass Communication from Carleton University (1985) and an EMBA from the University of Toronto A committed life long learner, Petra also completed several courses in Magazine Design & Production at Ryerson, and has taken several a variety of additional ourses in Art History & German (NYU), Communication Studies (McLuhan Institute, U of T), plus Leadership training at the Centre for Leadership Studies in North Carolina, Integrated Learning Executive