The USDA grade shield means that the cheese has been inspected and graded by an experienced and highly trained government grader. And it means the cheese was produced in a USDA-approved plant, under sanitary conditions. It is your guarantee of consistent and dependable quality.
USDA Grade AA Cheese
Cheddar cheese meeting the U.S. Grade AA is the
highest quality. It meets exacting USDA standards,
has a fine, highly pleasing flavor, a smooth, compact
texture, uniform color, and attractive appearance.
To earn this grade, cheese must be produced with
special care — in the quality of the milk, cheesemaking
skill, curing or ripening process, and packaging.
The AA shield is assurance of consistently fine
Cheddar flavor and texture in every package.
USDA Grade A Cheese
Cheddar cheese meeting the U.S. Grade A is also of
good quality, but not as high as AA. The flavor is
pleasing. However, there may be more variation in
flavor and texture between packages.
USDA “Quality Approved” Cheese
Cheese and cheese products not covered by a U.S.
grade standard may be inspected and bear the USDA
“Quality Approved” inspection shield on the label.
Pasteurized process cheese, cheese food and spreads,
and cottage cheese are examples of cheese products
receiving USDA inspection.
To carry the “Quality Approved” shield, the product
must be manufactured in a plant meeting the USDA
sanitary specifications for plants and equipment.