The production of cheese predates recorded history and was possibly discovered accidentally throughout the transport of fresh milk within the organs of ruminants like sheep, goats, cows, and buffalo. In the millennia before refrigeration, cheese became the simplest way to preserve milk. Though it's unknown where cheese production was initially discovered, proof of early cheese-making is popular in the Middle East, Europe, and Central Asia.


Early Cheeses

It is thought that cheese was initially discovered around 8000 BC around the time once sheep were first domesticated. Rennet, the enzyme which is used to create cheese, is of course present in the stomachs of ruminants. The leak-proof stomachs and different bladder-like organs of animals were usually used to store and transport milk and other liquids. While not refrigeration, hot summer heat together with residual rennet within the stomach lining would have naturally curdled the milk to provide the earliest types of cheese.

These milk curds were strained, and salt was added for extra preservation, giving birth to what we currently know as "cheese." Even with the addition of salt, warm climates meant that almost all cheeses were eaten up fresh and made daily. Early Roman texts describe how ancient Romans enjoyed cheese. They enjoyed various kind of cheeses, and cheese making was already thought of an art form. They provided hard cheese for the Roman legions.

The word cheese comes from the Latin word caseus, the origin of that is derived back to the proto-Indo-European root kwat, which means to ferment or become sour.

European Cheeses

As cheesemaking became more popular in to the cooler climates of the North of Europe, less salt was required for preservation, that led to creamier, milder varieties of cheese. These cooler climates additionally saw the invention of aged, ripened, and blue cheeses. Several of the cheeses that we are acquainted with nowadays (cheddar, gouda, parmesan, camembert) were 1st made in Europe throughout the Middle-Ages.

Modern Cheeses

Mass production of cheese didn't occur till 1815 in Svizzera once the primary cheese mill was designed. Soon after, scientists discovered a way to manufacture organic compound and industrial cheese production unfold like conflagration.

Pasteurization helped to make soft cheeses safer, reducing the danger of spreading tuberculosis, food poisoning, listeria meningitis, and brucellosis. Outbreaks still occur from raw milk cheeses, and pregnant ladies are warned to not eat soft-ripened cheeses and blue-veined cheeses.

With the American industrial food, a revolution came with the invention of processed cheese. Processed cheese combines natural cheese with milk, emulsifiers, stabilizers, flavoring, and coloring. This cheap cheese product melts easily and consistently and has become an American favorite. Production of processed cheese merchandise skyrocketed throughout the World War II era. Up to this time, Americans have continuously consumed a lot more processed cheese than natural cheeses.