One village in the interior of Switzerland has a tradition that is quite unique.
They always prepare a special cheese for their later funeral.
Cheese is an important fermented milk product in Switzerland and many other European countries.
The people in Grimentz Village, Switzerland consider cheese to be an important object that is not only for fulfilling food needs and symbolizes joy.
In this village cheese is also a food reserve for people who come to the funeral.
Because of this, many villagers have prepared cheese to be served at their meal from long ago.
Grimentz is a small village which is quite isolated because it is surrounded by the Val d’Annviers mountains.
In 1992 an anthropologist named Yvonne Preiswerk came to the village of Grimentz.
There he found a funeral tradition that was unique and similar to the burial tradition in Egypt.
This tradition combines death with cheese.
Cheese is a durable food so it can be stored for serving at someone’s funeral.
The cheese served is also known as the ‘cheese wheel’, because it is round and big like a wheel.
Most of the residents there raise cows, so they produce lots of abundant milk for cheese.
After that someone in the family will hold a ‘Picnic for the dead’.
This event is filled with a basket containing a bottle of wine, bread and cheese that has been prepared.
Many Grimentz residents believe that spirits who have recently died, or other spirits often appear there at night.
Grimentz residents think that after death, people can taste the food left by the deceased before his departure.
According to Zufferey, many people are starting to leave the cheese tradition for this funeral.
Because many people moved to the city and made this tradition start to erode.