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Author:  Shoshi
E-mail:  not available
Date:  6/8/2012 8:24:00 PM
Subject:  cheese clarification
Message:  This question about what constitutes hard cheese (requiring a hecsher) versus soft cheese (which does not) keeps coming up, and I think there is a lot of confusion. (At least there is for me!)

Could you please clarify which of the more common cheeses are which? For instance you have listed feta and mozzarella as soft cheeses, but is all mozzarella considered "soft" (including the harder kind used to make pizza), or only the stretchy "fresh" kind?

What about Colby, Monterey Jack (or Pepper Jack), and Mild Cheddar? Or Mexican style melting cheeses like Chihuahua and Queso Quesadilla?

Thanks so much for the clarification.

   
Reply:  The key to use is that any cheese that normally was made with Rennet and needs a form of artificial rennet or vegetable rennet to replace the animal rennet, this type cheese is what we are calling hard cheese, and that is where the restriction of Gevinat Akum is applicable. All other items are not considered Gevina for these purposes, they're the same as yogurt. So if you're not sure, look into the history of the cheeses that you have in question.

AA

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