A type of processed cheese that are manufactured to offer a longer shelf life for consumers and retailers. When producing Imitation or Substitute Cheeses, the butter fat and water are removed from the cheese to make them more stable and provide an almost indefinite shelf life requiring very little refrigeration if any. Typically, the Imitation or Substitute cheeses are made with ingredients other than cheese which may enhance, improve or alter the nutritioinal components. Soy or milk-based ingredients are commonly used as substitute ingredients as a means to offer a product the helps digestion or other types of issues for consumers desiring a cheese alternatives.
Imitation and Substitute Cheeses have the Processed Cheese, rubbery-like texture with a mild or bland flavor due to the ingredients. The cheese has reduced-fat or no milk products included in the ingredients as well as vegetable oils substituted for butterfat. A soy-based or milk-based casein, which is a protein solid, is often used to replace the cheese curd required for processing the product into cheese. While Imitation Cheeses cannot always equal the nutritional value of natural or processed cheeses, Substitute Cheeses typically can equal others in nutrients.
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