Putting the ‘wood’ in wood fired pizzas

If you truly love cheese, you may want to click away now.

Every now and then, you learn a tidbit of information that you can’t unlearn and I’m about to share a home truth about cheese that may just impact your love affair.

It’s like when you found out that a bottle of coke has 15 teaspoons of sugar in it.


Sure, you always knew it wasn’t healthy, but that little fact drives home the point that it’s supremely unhealthy. Now, whenever I’m tempted to slam down a glass of icy cold coke on a hot day, I can’t help but visualise myself spooning 15 teaspoons of sugar into a cup. Talk about a craving killer…

So in that vein, I have a food-related truth bomb to drop about something that is likely sitting in your fridge right now. It might even have its own shelf.

I’m talking, of course, about cheese.

You may have seen the headlines recently about an American brand called ‘Castle Cheese’. It’s making news because the US Food and Drug Administration found that one of its products, ‘100% Parmesan Cheese’, actually contained no Parmesan cheese at all.

Instead, it was a compound of a range of other, cheaper cheeses and an inexpensive filler: wood pulp.

Its technical name is cellulose and it’s a common anti-clumping agent made from wood pulp – although its main use is to make paper.

Apparently, cellulose is a safe additive when it’s used at an acceptable level of 2 to 4 percent, according to Bloomberg News.

But it’s often used in much higher percentages of up to four times that amount. And it’s in just about every cheese known to man!

It’s sneakily hidden on food labels as a benign-sounding ‘anti caking agent’. I checked my Parmesan cheese label as soon as I heard about this story and sure enough, anti caking agent appeared on the label. It’s also in our bag of shredded cheddar cheese.

The only way to avoid it, reports HuffPo, is to shell out for imported, authentic Italian cheese, as it’s made in accordance with strict regulations.

Otherwise, you’ll have to live with the fact that the Parmesan you dust over your pizza shares a common ingredient with the pizza box it came it. It sure puts the ‘wood’ in wood fired pizza!

The Meddler

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