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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

CFR - Code of Federal Regulations Title 21

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The information on this page is current as of Oct 17, 2023.

For the most up-to-date version of CFR Title 21, go to the Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (eCFR).

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Help | More About 21CFR
[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 21, Volume 2]
[CITE: 21CFR133.195]



Subpart B - Requirements for Specific Standardized Cheese and Related Products

Sec. 133.195 Swiss and emmentaler cheese.

(a) Description. (1) Swiss cheese, emmentaler cheese, is the food prepared by the procedure set forth in paragraph (a)(3) of this section, or by any other procedure which produces a finished cheese having the same physical and chemical properties. It has holes or eyes developed throughout the cheese. The minimum milkfat content is 43 percent by weight of the solids and the maximum moisture content is 41 percent by weight, as determined by the methods described in § 133.5. The dairy ingredients used may be pasteurized. Swiss cheese is at least 60 days old.

(2) If pasteurized dairy ingredients are used, the phenol equivalent value of 0.25 gram of swiss cheese is not more than 3 micrograms as determined by the method described in § 133.5.

(3) One or more of the dairy ingredients specified in paragraph (b)(1) of this section may be bleached, warmed, or treated with hydrogen peroxide/catalase, and is subjected to the action of lactic acid-producing and propionic acid-producing bacterial cultures. One or more of the clotting enzymes specified in paragraph (b)(2) of this section is added to set the dairy ingredients to a semisolid mass. The mass is cut into particles similar in size to wheat kernels. For about 30 minutes the particles are alternately stirred and allowed to settle. The temperature is raised to about 126 deg.F. Stirring is continued until the curd becomes firm. The acidity of the whey at this point, calculated as lactic acid, does not exceed 0.13 percent. The curd is transferred to hoops or forms and pressed until the desired shape and firmness are obtained. The cheese is then salted by immersing it in a saturated salt solution for about 3 days. It is then held at a temperature of about 50deg. to 60 deg.F. for a period of 5 to 10 days, after which it is held at a temperature of about 75 deg.F. until it is approximately 30 days old, or until the so-called eyes form. Salt, or a solution of salt in water, is added to the surface of the cheese at some time during the curing process. The cheese is then stored at a lower temperature for further curing. One or more of the optional ingredients specified in paragraph (b)(3) of this section may be added during the procedure.

(b) Optional ingredients. The following safe and suitable ingredients may be used:

(1) Dairy ingredients. Milk, nonfat milk, or cream, as defined in § 133.3, used alone or in combination.

(2) Clotting enzymes. Rennet and/or other clotting enzymes of animal, plant, or microbial origin.

(3) Other optional ingredients. (i) Coloring.

(ii) Calcium chloride in an amount not more than 0.02 percent (calculated as anhydrous calcium chloride) by weight of the dairy ingredients, used as a coagulation aid.

(iii) Enzymes of animal, plant, or microbial origin, used in curing or flavor development.

(iv) Antimycotic agents, the cumulative levels of which shall not exceed good manufacturing practice, may be added to the surface of the cheese.

(v) Benzoyl peroxide or a mixture of benzoyl peroxide with potassium alum, calcium sulfate, and magnesium carbonate used to bleach the dairy ingredients. The weight of the benzoyl peroxide is not more than 0.002 percent of the weight of the milk being 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, vitamin A is added to the curd in such quantity as to compensate for the vitamin A or its precursors destroyed in the bleaching process, and artificial coloring is not used.

(vi) Hydrogen peroxide, followed by a sufficient quantity of catalase preparation to eliminate the hydrogen peroxide. The weight of the hydrogen peroxide shall not exceed 0.05 percent of the weight of the milk and the weight of the catalase shall not exceed 20 parts per million of the weight of the milk treated.

(c) Nomenclature. The name of the food is "swiss cheese", or alternatively, "emmentaler cheese".

(d) 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) Enzymes of animal, plant, or microbial origin may be declared as "enzymes"; and

(2) The dairy ingredients may be declared, in descending order of predominance, by the use of the terms "milkfat and nonfat milk" or "nonfat milk and milkfat", as appropriate.

[48 FR 2746, Jan. 21, 1983; 48 FR 11426, Mar. 18, 1983, as amended at 55 FR 6795, Feb. 27, 1990; 58 FR 2895, Jan. 6, 1993]