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King of cheese – how Parmigiano-Reggiano is made

Merritt Steidl, deli category analyst
Friday, April 5, 2013

Parmigiano-Reggiano has been a tradition in Italy for more than nine centuries. In fact, its popularity and long-standing history have earned it the nickname, “King of Cheese.”

The art of making Parmigiano-Reggiano has been passed down through families for generations. The fundamental steps to making the cheese have not changed in more than 800 years. The ingredient list is also the same – it’s still made using only milk, rennet and salt.

Parmigiano-Reggiano has DOP (Denominazione di Origine Protetta) designation, meaning it must be produced under strict guidelines in order to be stamped “Parmigiano-Reggiano.” One of the most important guidelines is geographical production area. The cheese must be made in the provinces between the Po and Reno rivers – Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Mantua or Bologna. The milk produced in this region is known for being exceptionally rich.

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