I was wondering how low is a "low" in low-fat cheese. It can't be 0%, because then cheese wouldn't exist, right? :)

In my country, there's something called "fresh cheese", and fat percentages are in range of 5-10%, but in dry matter, fat percentage is higher, like 20%-30%...

Any thoughts?

2 Answers 2


In Europe at least, the rules on advertising say:

"for a product to be able to make a claim that it was low in saturated fat under EU Regulation 1924/2006 on Nutrition and Health Claims Made on Foods, it should contain no more than 1.5 g of saturated fat per 100 g of solids"

(from the ASA Adjudication on Youngs Seafood Ltd )

  • Ouch, that's 1.5% of fat, which would probably be closer to 0.5% "as per advertisement". Thanks.
    – mr.b
    Commented Jul 29, 2010 at 13:49
  • No, that's 1.5% SATURATED fat. Commented Nov 8, 2010 at 13:59

It can't be 0%, because then cheese wouldn't exist, right? :)

After all, nope. Cheese is not fat only.

There is also protein and water. So if you'd remove all the fat, cheese will still contain water and protein.

Many hard cheeses contain about 30% fat and 30% to 10% protein. Gruyère for example has 32% fat and 28% protein (see here, in German). The softer the cheese the more water it contains (and sometimes also more fat).

In Switzerland we don't know "low-fat", but instead "half-fat", "fourth-fat" and "no-fat". A sour fresh cheese or curd is available as no-fat (less than 1% of fat). Also Schabziger/Sap Sago (world worst cheese according to Cheese Mistress, scroll down to Sap Sago :-) is fat free. Cottage cheese is sold as fourth-fat (6% fat contents). Some hard cheeses, especially Alp cheeses, are half-fat.

  • I do wonder why it is world's worst cheese, given it's fat-free. In my opinion, fat does improve taste.. Whey is also only water and protein, and very very little bit of fat, it tastes like.. Well, like whey :) So, I guess that this "cheese" tastes much like whey, in its more dense form.
    – mr.b
    Commented Aug 2, 2010 at 0:43
  • It's the mistress' opinion, not mine... :-) In fact, everybody in my family loves Schabziger except my brother... :-)
    – nalply
    Commented Aug 2, 2010 at 9:17

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