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Low-Fat Cheeses and Melted Cheeses

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Find out what constitutes low-fat cheese and the two types of melted cheeses that create that distinct creamy smooth uniform taste.

Low-fat cheese

Compared to regular cheeses, low-fat cheeses have a lower or reduced fat content. By definition, the term “low-fat” means that the cheese contains at least 25% less fat than its regular counterpart. When fat content is reduced, the taste is also lessened and the texture becomes more elastic and less unctuous and savoury than regular cheeses. Examples include Envol (4% m.f.), skim-milk cheese (7% m.f.), Frugal (7% m.f.) and Allegro (4% and 7% m.f.).

Heat-processed cheese

The melting process gives these cheeses more stability as well as a uniform taste, not to mention a much longer shelf life. When heated, the cheese becomes runny and very shiny. Once cooled, its original elastic texture is restored.

There are three types of heat-processed cheese products: cheese rolls, cheese spreads and cheese slices. Processed cheese products must contain a minimum of 5% cheese. One or more types of pressed-curd cheeses are kneaded and heated. Other ingredients can be added such as milk, water, salt, vinegar, food colouring and emulsifiers. Once the cheese is smooth and creamy, it is hermetically sealed and wrapped. Examples include Vache qui rit, Swiss Knight and cheese spread.

Cold-processed cheese

This type of cheese is made in the same way as heat-processed cheese, but no heat is used. The addition of ingredients like vinegar, salt and food coloring renders a product that is similar to melted cheese. Corn syrup and sugar are often added to soften the taste and aged cheddar is used to give this type of cheese a sharper, saltier and slightly sour taste.