The unit is fitted with an automatic loading conveyor and can easily be fitted to an unloading conveyor or similar device. The cheese wheels are presented to the BCPM on a conveyor that feeds the indexing head. An electronic eye senses the presence of cheese in the reception station. It is then indexed to the piercing stations where the wheels receive bi-directional pierces on the vertical axis using specially designed needles that eliminate product drag. This space saving unit is very simple and requires no operator. The speed of the machine can be adjusted and will keep up with the most demanding blue cheese production operations.