Why does cream cheese come in such difficult-to-reuse packaging?
Venture to the nearest supermarket and there is a chance that the cream cheese stocked on its shelves comes wrapped in tin foil and a thin cardboard box. Philadelphia Cream Cheese, Kraft’s worldwide brand of cream cheese, has been wrapped in tin foil for more than a dozen decades.
“We still use foil for our brick Philadelphia Cream Cheese,” said Lynne Galia, a Kraft spokeswoman told Marketplace. “Foil provides a strong light and oxygen barrier for our product, limiting oxidation, which helps maintain the great taste and quality of our Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Since the late 1800s, high-quality Philadelphia Cream Cheese has been wrapped in foil. Although we don’t know the origin of the brick form, it makes logical to wrap this dairy product with foil.”
Kraft does offer cream cheese in plastic tubs, and some stores in the United States stock both. Typically, flavored cream cheese comes in a plastic tub while the plain classic cream cheese is most often found wrapped in a foil. After opening, plastic containers are simpler to reuse than tin foil packaging.
Philadelphia Cream Cheese is exclusively available in plastic containers in the United Kingdom. The company’s global arm, which is now a separate company known as Mondelez, only sold cream cheese in tin foil between the 1960s and 1980s. On the history page of its U.K. website, the cream cheese manufacturer notes that between the years 1977 and 1985, new packaging was introduced along with new flavored and low fat cream cheeses.
“The fussy foil packaging have been replaced with a convenient container,” the site says.
Marketplace contacted Jeff Marx, a rabbi and cream cheese specialist, to find out why cream cheese was packed in foil in the first place.
“Cream cheese is really soft. “It must be wrapped in order to retain some shape,” Marx remarked. Back in 1877, William Lawrence was manufacturing cream cheese at his farm in Chester, New York. To wrap his cheese, he used 3-by-4 inch square-like forms and manila tissue paper that Marx described as a firm piece of paper.
“Up to this time, almost all cheese was produced in round hoops, but when you are packing smaller cheeses in a box to ship them, you can pack more cheeses in square form than in a round form. This is a critical point in manufacturing when the form of the product varies for a variety of reasons.”
In 1880, Lawrence was contacted by Alvah Reynolds, who wanted to distribute Lawrence’s cream cheese.
“Reynolds is a marketing wizard.” ‘You need a name for your cheese,’ he says to Lawrence. Because up till now, you just got a cheese in a box that says ‘sold by Lawrence.’ So Reynolds replies, ‘Let’s name it.’ ‘Hey, Philly has a reputation for exquisite cheeses,’ he continues. It has done so for a long time. “Let’s call it a Philly cheese and put it on the cheese wrappers,” Marx said. Reynolds also proposed that they use tin foil to make imprinting simpler. That is precisely what the two guys do. “And from then on, Philadelphia’s cream cheese has this signature form wrapped in tin foil with Philadelphia cream cheese printed on the top.”
Should you keep the foil on cream cheese?
Keep it in its original packaging if it is unopened. If opened, keep foil wrapping on and either wrap in plastic wrap or place in an airtight container.
Why cheese is covered in foil?
Use cheese paper or aluminium foil
This prevents the cheese from drying out and enables it to breathe, extending its shelf life. Once wrapped, you should place your cheese in an airtight container to make sure it gets the right amount of moisture.
Does cheese react on aluminum foil?
Also, the acids and salts in certain cheeses may react with the foil, imparting a metallic flavor. If aluminum foil is your only option, you can use it to wrap hard, low-moisture styles of cheese for a very short period of time — think a couple of days rather than a few weeks.
Does foil help cheese melt?
The foil also helps to trap heat, resulting in a faster and more evenly roasted dish. So, the next time you’re wondering whether or not to cover your mac and cheese, keep in mind that there are some obvious benefits to doing so. You’ll have a tastier, more uniformly cooked food that will delight everyone at the table.