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World's oldest cheese discovered in China

Posted on Monday, 3 March, 2014 | Comment icon 20 comments

Cheese has been a food staple for thousands of years. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 J.P.Lon
Cheese dating back more than 3,600 years has been found on mummies unearthed in the Taklamakan desert.
Unappetizing chunks of the aged delicacy appeared to have been buried alongside several mummies in the Xiaohe Cemetery, an ancient necropolis discovered in the 1930s.

The cheese itself is believed to have been a simple but nutritious variety that also seems to preserve rather well given that it managed to survive several millennia buried in the ground.

"Despite being extraordinary simple, it possessed the necessary qualities for supporting the economic expansion of ruminant animal herding into Eastern Eurasia," the study authors wrote.

Research leader Changsui Wang from the University of Chinese Academy of Sciences collected together a total of 13 samples of cheese from 10 of the tombs.

It is thought that the cheese may have been buried with the deceased in the belief that it would help provide them with sustenance either in or on their way to the afterlife.

Source: Khaleej Times | Comments (20)

Tags: Mummies, China, Cheese

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #11 Posted by atomk12 on 3 March, 2014, 19:50
Dear China, Please separate this cheese and disperse it evenly amongst your entire population as soon as possible. Thank you.
Comment icon #12 Posted by ancient astronaut on 3 March, 2014, 22:21
And guess who's hungry? Yeah, he eats some gross ****.
Comment icon #13 Posted by alfonso on 3 March, 2014, 22:49
it might be knob cheese
Comment icon #14 Posted by Leonardo on 3 March, 2014, 23:04
I'll invite some archaeologists over to investigate my fridge. I'm fairly certain they'll find some cheese in there to beat this record.
Comment icon #15 Posted by YukiEsmaElite0 on 4 March, 2014, 18:51
Ha. Things grow better with age. Save for cheese, apparently.
Comment icon #16 Posted by Imaginarynumber1 on 4 March, 2014, 18:55
Mmmm... mummy cheese.
Comment icon #17 Posted by PersonFromPorlock on 4 March, 2014, 22:45
I'm torn between calling it 'Headcheese' or 'Gamalost'. As for Limburger, nothing that hasn't already been through the digestive system should smell like that.
Comment icon #18 Posted by Duchess Gummybuns on 6 March, 2014, 0:18
I'm not even gonna make a "cut the cheese" joke. It would smell really bad.
Comment icon #19 Posted by Hawkin on 6 March, 2014, 3:42
I think his cheese slid off his cracker.-The Green Mile
Comment icon #20 Posted by FizzPuff on 7 March, 2014, 2:44
Sounds tasty I'd try it!

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