Over the past generation, one cheese, above all others, carried the dairy industry.
What was the variety?
Since 1975, U.S. consumption of this variety has grown from 2.11 to 11.27 pounds per person, according to the latest USDA statistics.
That’s an impressive 434 percent growth or 9.16 pounds per person.
Not only has per capita consumption grown by 434 percent, the sheer amount of Mozzarella has grown even more. That’s because the U.S. population expanded by 104 million during the past 40 years.
In 1975, the 216 million U.S. citizens would have collectively consumed 456 million pounds of Mozzarella. Fast-forward 40 years, and the 320 million Americans now eat 3.606 billion. Yes, billion, with a B, pounds of Mozzarella. Of course, the favorite entrée to taste Mozzarella is pizza, which also has exploded in popularity.
This growth makes Mozzarella America’s most popular cheese, with Cheddar standing second at 10.16 pounds per capita.
As a result of Mozzarella’s skyrocketing popularity, overall cheese consumption has risen 148 percent since 1975. That is a good thing because fluid milk consumption has slid 37 percent during that same 40-year time window.
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(c) Hoard's Dairyman Intel 2016
November 14, 2016