The ‘100% Grated Parmesan Cheese’ in Your Fridge May Actually Contain Wood, FDA Finds

02/16/2016 at 06:14 PM ET

Buca Di Beppo Penne Pasta
Courtesy Buca Di Beppo

The cheese you’re using on your pasta might not be so “grate” after all.

According to Bloomberg Business, the FDA has reported that Castle Cheese Inc. — the manufacturer that makes Market Pantry’s “100% grated Parmesan Cheese,” which used to be sold at Target — used substitutes, including wood (yes, wood!) pulp on their product.

RELATED: Study Finds that Cheese Is Just as Addictive as Drugs

In fact, the report showed that “no parmesan cheese was used to manufacture” the cheese. Instead, it was made with Swiss, mozzarella and white cheddar (which are cheaper) — and the added bonus of cellulose (a byproduct of the wood pulp).

And Target isn’t alone. While a safe level of cellulose (which acts as an anti-clumping agent) is around 2 to 4 percent, according to Blomberg, certain common brands have tested much higher.

RELATED: Man’s Phone Accidentally Clogged with Dozens of Text Requests for Free Chipotle

Walmart’s Great Value 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese, for example, reportedly came in at 7.8 percent, and Essential Everyday 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese (sold at Jewel-Osco) had 8.8 percent. Whole Foods and Kraft showed some percentage of cellulose either below or within the acceptable level.

While these substitutes and fillers are costing manufacturers less to produce, the FDA is cracking down on the people cutting the cheese—literally. According to reports, Castle Cheese Inc. has stopped making the not-so-Parmesan cheese, and filed for bankruptcy in 2014.

Blake Bakkila

FILED UNDER: Food , Food News

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

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Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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fieldhockeygk11 on

That’s what happens when you buy the cheap stuff in a can instead of actually buying a block of cheese. Then you can see what you’re getting. Splurge on the real cheese instead of the crap in the can.

WhatShouldIDo on

What? I just bought some parmesan Cheese on Sunday. Should I throw it out? I don’t want wood.😦

Mrs. B on

I’m glad that I don’t like Parmesan cheese. I don’t know what fieldhockey means about canned cheese.

li on

To WhatShouldIDo – I assume you are asking a sincere question. The answer – take it back to the store where you bought it. Take your receipt if you have it. You may also want to take a print-out of this story. Or better yet, a story from a more reliable news source. If you don’t have a printer, just show them a reliable article using your cell phone. If the person who initially helps you won’t take it back, ask to speak with the manager. You probably won’t have any problems. Good luck.

Ally on

Cellulose is added to every kind and every brand of shredded cheese.

Saiph on

Well, to be fair, the word order makes it clear that the product is “100% grated,” not that it is “100% cheese.”

/sarcasm font/

IT--II--IT on

Again, about that GMO-Monsanto
——————–GMO ‘food’ HOLOCAUST???

Lobbyists for China-America on

There is cellulose in many products like bread, even wood rosin in some sodas. I am very allergic to that.

CPinSL on

Cellulose is the building blocks of plant fiber. Yes, it is in wood, but it is also in your veggies. The only issue I see here is that 1) the public doesn’t understand that fact, 2) cheaper brands are using it as a filler rather than just an anti-clumping agent, and 3) people feel deceived (and rightfully so). But, if you don’t like the thought of eating cellulose that comes from wood products, you better also stay away from Cinnamon (made from ground bark) and Bamboo Shoots (technically a grass, but we’ve all seen how woody bamboo plants are – they even make hardwood flooring from bamboo!)

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