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Mold growth on cheese

Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007 5:42 pm
by honeymania19
Hello, my name is Megan. I have just completed a science project on mold growth on cheese. I need an interview however the person I was going to interview has just canceled. Sadly I need these questions answered before the 20th. Please help me!

1. Please give me your best definition on mold and cheese.
2. How does mold effect cheese growth?
3. Why does cheese grow on mold?
4. How does mold grow?
5. What type of mold grows on food, in particular cheese.

Thank you so much! I really need answers to these questions!
Also I need your name for my works cited/ bibliography. Thank you. :D

Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007 6:09 pm
by staryl13

mold growth on cheese

Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007 10:41 pm
by honeymania19
I need an interview from a scientist please not a website thank you very much though :D :) 8) :lol: :!:

Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007 11:11 pm
by EmilyDolson
Hi Megan,

What qualifications, exactly, does the scientist you interview need to have? I would be happy to answer your questions, but, although I have a deep background in science, through science fairs and other activities, I'm still in high school, and don't have a P.h.d, pr anything. Is that okay? If it isn't, I can request for an expert who is actually a professional scientist to asnwer your questions, but I can't guarantee that they will be able to get back to you tonight.

- Emily Dolson


Posted: Wed Dec 19, 2007 11:30 pm
by honeymania19
it can be anyone as long as you know the subject of mold and cheese pretty

Posted: Thu Dec 20, 2007 1:03 am
by EmilyDolson
1. Please give me your best definition on mold and cheese.

Molds are microscopic fungi, which survive by consuming organic matter. This consumption causes decomposition, making molds a vital part of the food web. Although mold is most commonly associated with decomposing decaying plant matter, it can also grow on animal matter. It is found in just about all natural environments, and is all most always present in some form, as the spores are resiliant to even very extreme conditions.

Cheese is a food, beloved to many people, which is produced by curdling the milk of mammals, generally cows or goats. Curdling is the process of seperate the curds (solid percipitated proteins) from the whey (the other half of the milk proteins (casein), which is liquid), and can be accomplished ussing acid or rennet. "True cheeses" are curdled by both. This is accomplished by adding cultures of bacteria to the milk, which ferment it, making it more acidic. After this, an enzyme called rennet is added, which completes the curdling, producing cheese.

2. How does mold affect cheese growth?

There are a few effects that mold can have on cheese growth. For soft-ripened cheeses, such as brie, the mold forms a crust around the cheese that allows it to become gooier, smoother and more flavorful.

Another type of cheese, called "washed-rind," which includes munster cheese, uses mold to encourage the growth of flavor-enhancing bacteria.

In the third case, that of "blue cheeses", like gorgonzola, the cheese is innoculated with mold before it has a chance to harden very much. As the cheese ages, the mold grows through it, creating beautiful blue veins and a delicious flavor.

3. Why does cheese grow on mold?

Do you mean why does mold grow on cheese? Mold grows on cheese because cheese provides mold with great nutrients, plentiful water access, and an environment at an appropriate pH. These are the most essential elements of an environment conducivce to mold, and cheese has them.

As a result of this relationship, hard cheeses, with less water, tend to mold slower than soft cheeses, with lots of water available.

4. How does mold grow?

As fungus, mold reproduces through spores, which are very similar to seeds except in that seeds contain embryos (small, undeveloped versions of the plant), while spores contain only undifferentiated genetic material. Spores are incredibly resiliant to extreme conditions, and can survive just about everything except a combination of intense heat and pressure. Once these spores find a favorable environment, such as the one described above (they also like warm temoeratures, but this is not essential), the spores can develop into mature mold, which in turn, produces more spores, which, already being in a favorable environment, grow into more mold in the same location.

5. What type of mold grows on food, in particular cheese.

There are an incredible number of different mold species in the world, falling into a number of different genuses. One genus that, in general, likes to grow on cheese is the Penicillium genus, which is usually harmless. In fact, these molds are the ones that are usually added intentionally to cheeses. Species in this genus include P. commune, P. palitans, P. solitum and P. roqueforti ss. roqueforti. More harmful molds, which generally produce myotoxins, include Stachybotrys chartarum, which is by far the most well known, along with a multitude of others.

I hope that helps! Is it enough? Sorry it took so long (my power glitched off while I was writing it). If you have any more questions, feel free to ask.

- Emily Dolson

Re: Mold growth on cheese

Posted: Sat Nov 20, 2010 7:11 am
by SCIENCEgurl123
I am doing the same project but alittle different. Mine is about what color mold is and where and why does it grow on different types of cheese. :D :D

Re: Mold growth on cheese

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2010 11:35 am
by adance

Sounds like a good question. Keep in mind that what mold grows on your cheese has a lot to do with what kind of mold is floating around in the air and happens to land on your cheese. Maybe you'd like to try a few different environments?

Good luck and let us know if you have any questions.


Re: Mold growth on cheese

Posted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 6:51 am
by SCIENCEgurl123
My project title is " Mold on Cheese". My purpose is to see how much mold grows on different types of cheeses. Swiss, Cheddar, American and Mozzarella. They will be cut into tiny squares and placed into a plastic container in the Dark and light.
I personaly think the most mold will grow on Swiss cheese in the dark. The color will be dark green with alittle brown. The cheese will be placed in the back of the fridge and in a dark closet. :D 8) :?: :!: :wink: :roll: :)

Re: Mold growth on cheese

Posted: Mon Dec 06, 2010 11:18 am
by adance
Sounds like a good plan. You may want to consider doing multiple squares for each cheese, so you'll have some repetition in your experiment.

What leads you to the hypothesis about Swiss?

Re: Mold growth on cheese

Posted: Tue Dec 07, 2010 1:20 am
by jeffer
Definitions of mold

1. A hollow form or matrix for shaping a fluid or plastic substance.
2. A frame or model around or on which something is formed or shaped.
3. Something that is made in or shaped on a mold.
4. The shape or pattern of a mold.
5. General shape or form: the oval mold of her face.
6. Distinctive character or type: a leader in the mold of her predecessors.
7. A fixed or restrictive pattern or form: a method of scientific investigation that broke the mold and led to a new discovery.
8. Architecture See molding.

Cheese - Definition

Cheese is a solid food made from the curdled milk of various animals--most commonly cows but sometimes goats, sheep, reindeer, and water buffalo. There are over 400 types of cheese. Rennet is often used to induce coagulation in the milk, although some cheeses are curdled with acids like vinegar or lemon juice or with extracts of various species of Cynara (sometimes called vegetable rennet). Rennet is an enzyme traditionally obtained from the stomach lining of :shock: bovine calves or a microbiological (laboratory-produced) substitute is used. Bacteria are added to cheese to reduce the pH, alter texture, and develop flavor, and some cheeses also have molds, either on the outer skin or throughout.

I will give more information about it later. It will help you a lot.

Re: Mold growth on cheese

Posted: Thu Dec 09, 2010 7:18 am
by SCIENCEgurl123