(a) Romano cheese is the food prepared from cow's milk or sheep's milk or goat's milk or mixtures of two or all of these and other ingredients specified in this section, by the procedure set forth in paragraph (b) of this section, or by another procedure which produces a finished cheese having the same physical and chemical properties as the cheese produced when the procedure set forth in paragraph (b) of this section is used. It grates readily, and has a granular texture and a hard and brittle rind. It contains not more than 34 percent of moisture, and its solids contain not less than 38 percent of milkfat, as determined by the methods prescribed in 133.5(a), (b), and (d). It is cured for not less than 5 months.
(b) Milk, which may be pasteurized or clarified or both, and which may be warmed, is subjected to the action of harmless lactic-acid-producing bacteria present in such milk or added thereto. Harmless artificial blue or green coloring in a quantity which neutralizes any natural yellow coloring in the curd may be added. Rennet, rennet paste, extract of rennet paste, or other safe and suitable milk-clotting enzyme that produces equivalent curd formation, singly or in any combination (with or without purified calcium chloride in a quantity not more than 0.02 percent, calculated as anhydrous calcium chloride, of the weight of the milk) is added to set the milk to be a semisolid mass. The mass is cut into particles no larger than corn kernels, stirred, and heated to a temperature of about 120 deg. F. The curd is allowed to settle to the bottom of the kettle or vat, and is then removed and drained for a short time, packed in forms or hoops, and pressed. The pressed curd is salted by immersing in brine for about 24 hours and is then removed from the brine and the surface allowed to dry. It is then alternately rubbed with salt and washed at intervals. It may be perforated with needles. It is finally drycured. During curing it is turned and scraped. The surface may be rubbed with vegetable oil. A harmless preparation of enzymes of animal or plant origin capable of aiding in the curing or development of flavor of romano cheese may be added during the procedure, in such quantity that the weight of the solids of such preparation is not more than 0.1 percent of the weight of the milk used.
(c)(1) For the purposes of this section, the word "milk" means cow's milk or goat's milk or sheep's milk or mixtures of two or all of these. Such milk may be adjusted by separating part of the fat therefrom or (in the case of cow's milk) by adding one or more of the following: Cream, skim milk, concentrated skim milk, nonfat dry milk; (in the case of goat's milk) the corresponding products from goat's milk; (in the case of sheep's milk) the corresponding products from sheep's milk; water in a quantity sufficient to reconstitute any such concentrated or dried products used.
(2) Such milk may be bleached by the use of benzoyl peroxide or a mixture of benzoyl peroxide with potassium alum, calcium sulfate, and magnesium carbonate; but the weight of the benzoyl peroxide is not more than 0.002 percent of the weight of the milk bleached, and the weight of the potassium alum, calcium, sulfate, and magnesium carbonate, singly or combined, is not more than six times the weight of the benzoyl peroxide used. If milk is bleached in this manner, sufficient vitamin A is added to the curd to compensate for the vitamin A or its precursors destroyed in the bleaching process, and artificial coloring is not used.
(d) Safe and suitable antimycotic agent(s), the cumulative levels of which shall not exceed current good manufacturing practice, may be added to the surface of the cheese.
(e) When romano cheese is made solely from cow's milk, the name of such cheese is "Romano cheese made from cow's milk", and may be preceded by the word "Vaccino" (or "Vacchino"); when made solely from sheep's milk, the name is "Romano cheese made from sheep's milk", and may be preceded by the word "Pecorino"; when made solely from goat's milk, the name is "Romano cheese made from goat's milk", and may be preceded by the word "Caprino"; and when a mixture of two or all of the milks specified in this section is used, the name of the cheese is "Romano cheese made from ___", the blank being filled in with the names of the milks used, in order of predominance by weight.
(f) Label declaration. Each of the ingredients used in the food shall be declared on the label as required by the applicable sections of parts 101 and 130 of this chapter, except that:
(1) When milk other than cow's milk is used, in whole or in part, the common or usual name of each such milk ingredient shall be declared in order of predominance by weight; and
(2) Enzymes of animal, plant, or microbial origin may be declared as "enzymes".
[42 FR 14366, Mar. 15, 1977, as amended at 48 FR 49014, Oct. 24, 1983; 49 FR 10095, Mar. 19, 1984; 58 FR 2895, Jan. 6, 1993]