Teri, a Fooducate community member asks
“After reading your latest post on cheese, I got to thinking. What about the stuff we can see. Like why is cheese yellow? Is it dye that is bad for you? I’d love to know.”
What you need to know:
Milk is not pure white. It actually contains a yellowish / orange pigment that comes from the grass that cows eat. You’ve probably heard of it – beta carotene, the precursor for vitamin A. It’s hard to notice the pigment because milk is mostly liquid. The pigment binds itself to the fat component of milk, not the liquid. The process of cheesemaking removes most of the liquid component from milk, leaving a higher concentration of the pigment and hence a yellow color.
That said, many cheeses do have added coloring, whether natural (Annatto) or artificial (yellow #5)
What to do at the supermarket:
When choosing your cheese, opt for a a product that did not have artificial colors added.