Let Them Eat Wood

Bloomberg Businessweek (Asia) - - COMPANIES / INDUSTRIES - −Ly­dia Mul­vany

When agents from the U.S. Food and Drug rug Ad­min­is­tra­tion paid a sur­prise visit to a Penn­syl­va­nia cheese fac­tory in Novem­ber 2012, they found ev­i­dence that Cas­tle Cheese was doc­tor­ing its so-called 100 per­cent Parme­san with cut-rate sub­sti­tutes and fillers such as wood pulp. That may sound like a plot from an episode of NYPD Bleu, but adul­ter­ated grated Parme­san and Ro­mano cheeses re­main a very real prob­lem.

Cel­lu­lose, de­rived from wood pulp, is of­ten added to shred­ded cheese to pre­vent clump­ing. As much as 4 per­cent is gen­er­ally con­sid­ered ac­cept­able.

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