It would totally ruin Taco Tuesdays if you reached into your bag of delicious shredded cheese and it had all congealed into a giant yellow-orange clump. But that never happens! Ever wonder why? Food companies add wood pulp, that's why.
Wood pulp — or cellulose, to be exact — is made from grinding out wood and other plant matter. You eat it all the time, probably! It's dumped into all sorts of dairy products because it's a cheap replacement for other, non-wood ingredients, aside from keep cheese slivers from clumping together, FoodRenegade reports.
Is this such a bad thing? The crew at FR gives an emphatic yes, because it's so unnatural. But so is eating shredded cheese out of a bag to begin with. The FDA says cellulose wood cheese is OK to eat, and when I want to make nachos or a baked potato or just put a handful of cheese in my mouth, a lot of the time I'd rather not take out a grater. You know what else isn't natural? Cheese graters. Nor is cheese itself. If we continue this gourmand naturalism ad infinitum, we'll be eating nothing but sand and blueberries. I say let's use the safe food tech we have — delicious, easy, orange cheese in a bag, sprinkled with wood dust. [FoodRenegade]