News Article

News Article

World's Oldest Cheese Discovered on Ancient Chinese Mummies


Mummy cheese

Last month we told you about a brand of cheese made from human bacteria, which the mere thought of just about made us lose our lunch. If that story didn't quite make you hurl, then we promise this one will have you running for the toilet!

USA Today reports that the world's oldest cheese has just been discovered on a handful of Chinese mummies, including the one seen above, which dates all the way back to 1615 B.C. The dead at Northwestern China's Small River Cemetery Number 5 were buried in such a way that essentially kept them vacuum sealed for freshness, and upon exhumation, strange crumbs were discovered on the necks and chests of several of the mummies. Chemists determined that the crumbs were actually pieces of cheese, which were preserved right along with the bodies.

Scientists had previously found fragments of ancient cheese-making strainers in Poland, but this remarkable find is said to be the new world record holder, in the oldest cheese department. They're unsure of why hunks of cheese were entombed with the bodies, but they suggest that perhaps they were offerings of food for the afterlife.

Pretty remarkable, considering cheese typically rots and liquifies very quickly!