Nutritional profile of Ager cheese selection

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Food labels are the main method to ensure that consumers are appropriately informed as regards the food they consume. In Europe, the provision of food information to consumers is regulated by specific laws, including (i) the European Regulation (EU) no 1169/2011, which regulates the mandatory food information including a list of mandatory particulars and nutritional declarations and (ii) the European Regulation (CE) no 1924/2006, concerning the voluntary nutrition and health claims (NHC) made on foods. Nutrient profiling involves the classification and ranking of foods according to their nutritional composition to prevent disease and promote health. For this purpose, the following 14 cheeses were selected (Ager cheese selection) among the Natural Historic Cheeses of Southern Italy: Ragusano PDO; Provola dei Nebrodi PDO; Piacentinu Ennese PDO; Pecorino Siciliano PDO; Vastedda della Valle del Belìce PDO; Caciocavallo Palermitano PAT; Maiorchino PAT; Caprino Nicastrese; Casizolu del Montiferru PAT; Pecorino di Filiano PDO; Canestrato di Moliterno PGI; Pecorino di Carmasciano PAT; Caciocavallo Podolico PAT; Cacioricotta PAT. A total of 173 cheese samples were analysed for moisture, protein, fat, ash, salt and fatty acid (FA) composition. On the basis of moisture content, the Ager cheeses may be classified into semi-hard, with moisture content varying between 35% and 45% (from Provola dei Nebrodi with 35.5% to Vastedda del Belice with 45.6%) and hard-cheese, with moisture content below 35% (from Pecorino di Carmasciano with 27.6%, to Maiorchino with 34.5%). Fat is an important component of cheeses and according to the general standard of cheese, the Ager cheeses can be classified as full fat, with a content of fat in dry matter above to 45% and less than 60% (from Pecorino di Carmasciano with 45.5% to Canestrato di Moliterno and Cacioricotta both with 46.5%) and medium fat, with content above to 25% and less than 45% (from Provola dei Nebrodi with 38.1% to Caciocavallo Podolico with 44.6%). As the saturated FA content, the AGER cheeses show the lowest content in Maiorchino cheese (65.4%) and the highest in Cacioricotta (73.3%). The chemical characteristics of each cheese are strongly linked to the milk species and breed, feeding system, production season and ripening stage. This nutritional information has been made available to producers for the labeling of their cheeses.
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)191-191
Numero di pagine1
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2021


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