Have you ever wondered what goes into your favorite Parmesan cheese? There has been a popular belief that wood shavings are added to Parmesan cheese, but is it true?

The Short Answer: No, authentic Parmesan cheese does not contain wood shavings.

The Long Answer: Parmesan cheese is a type of hard, aged cheese that originated in Italy. It is made from cow’s milk and has a distinct nutty flavor. The production of authentic Parmesan cheese is highly regulated by the Consorzio del Formaggio Parmigiano-Reggiano, which enforces strict standards and guidelines for its production.

One of the requirements for making authentic Parmesan cheese is the use of specific ingredients – milk, rennet (an enzyme used to curdle milk), salt, and whey. Wood shavings are not included in this list of ingredients.

So where did this rumor about wood shavings come from? It turns out that some manufacturers in the past have added cellulose powder to their grated parmesan cheese products as a filler. Cellulose powder is derived from wood pulp and can be used to prevent clumping and improve texture.

However, it’s important to note that cellulose powder is not the same as wood shavings. Cellulose powder is a refined ingredient that has been approved by the FDA as safe for consumption. Additionally, adding cellulose powder to grated parmesan cheese products is legal as long as it does not exceed 2% of the total weight.

With all that said, it’s important to know what you are buying when it comes to parmesan cheese products. If you want to ensure that your parmesan cheese doesn’t contain any fillers like cellulose powder or any other additives, look for labels that indicate “100% Parmigiano-Reggiano” or “authentic” on them.

  • Tip: If you are buying pre-grated parmesan cheese, look for products that have a short ingredient list with only parmesan cheese and possibly salt as ingredients. Avoid products that have added fillers or preservatives.

In conclusion, authentic Parmesan cheese does not contain wood shavings. However, some manufacturers may add cellulose powder to grated parmesan cheese products as a filler. As consumers, it’s important to read labels and be aware of what we are buying to ensure the quality and authenticity of our food products.