Have you ever heard the rumor that there’s wood filler in Parmesan cheese? It’s a claim that has been circulating for years, causing many people to question the quality and safety of this beloved Italian cheese.
Let’s start by addressing the root of this rumor. The truth is, Parmesan cheese does contain a substance called cellulose.
Cellulose is a natural component found in many plant-based foods, including fruits and vegetables. It is also commonly used as a food additive to improve texture and prevent clumping.
However, cellulose is not the same thing as wood filler. Wood filler is a synthetic material made from a mixture of wood particles and binding agents. It is typically used to repair cracks and holes in furniture or other wooden objects.
So no, there is no wood filler in Parmesan cheese. The cellulose found in Parmesan cheese is derived from plant sources such as wood pulp or cotton.
In fact, the use of cellulose as an ingredient in cheese production is perfectly legal and safe. The FDA has approved its use as a food additive, and it has been used in processed foods for decades.
But why do some people believe that there’s wood filler in Parmesan cheese? One reason could be the misinterpretation of an FDA report from 2016 that found some grated Parmesan cheeses contained higher levels of cellulose than expected. However, it’s important to note that these levels were still within the legal limit set by the FDA.
Another reason could be confusion between cellulose and sawdust, which is sometimes added to low-quality grated cheeses to bulk them up. However, sawdust would never be added to authentic Parmesan cheese because it would significantly alter its taste and texture.
So what can we conclude from all of this? While it’s true that Parmesan cheese contains cellulose, it does not contain wood filler or any other harmful additives. The use of cellulose in cheese production is a common and safe practice that has been approved by regulatory agencies.
Next time someone tries to tell you that there’s wood filler in Parmesan cheese, you can confidently educate them on the truth. And in the meantime, continue to enjoy your favorite Italian dishes with a sprinkle of delicious, authentic Parmesan cheese.