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Blue Cheese made with Penicillin mold?

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I have a friend who, like myself, is allergic to penicillin. I have a mild allergy, but he has a severe one. We went out to dinner recently and we both love blue cheese dressing, but he decided he didn't want it with his wings because of something he had heard from an EMT friend of his. Apparently, some blue cheeses are made with penicillin mold. I do know that some hand-made pepperonis are subjected to a penicillin wash as part of the curing process, but I had not heard of penicillin mold being used for cheeses. Is there any truth to this, and if so, should such cheeses be labelled for us poor slobs who might suffer from said allergy?

Ok, I did a little digging and found out my answer was yes, I could proibably eat it but my friend with the worse allergy may have a problem because he's also lactose intolerant. So now I wonder about the pepperoni.

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  1. I don't have a good answer for you, but my sweetie is allergic to penicillin, and he's noticed that the Pena Azul (spanish blue) that I adore makes his throat itchy and irritated, so he's stopped eating it. I'll ask my friend the cheesemonger next time I see her.

    1. I just bought some blue cheese from Trader Joe's and noticed that it listed Penicillium roquefortii as an ingredient.

      I usually don't read the ingredient list on cheeses, so I don't know if the other blue cheeses we've bought had penicillium roquefortii, too.

      1 Reply
      1. re: smlee

        It appears they do.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penicill...

        http://www.epa.gov/oppt/biotech/pubs/...

      2. Saw this post in the dark recess of something else I was searching for.

        Blue cheeses are made with either Penicillium roqueforti or p. glaucum.

        Penicillin is made from a completely different strain of penicillium, p. notatum.

        Different strains, and cheese molds (including p. candidum in brie/camembert) should pose no problem for people with penicillin allergies.