Gross Story Alert

The other day in class we went around the room and talked about what we liked to eat in Italian restaurants. One guy said buffalo mozzarella and someone else told him that it was dangerous. Then our teacher chimed in and said maybe we didn’t want to know what the situation was, but of course we did.

I assumed my teacher was vegan (which gave her extra cool points in my book) because she’d said before that she never ate meat or dairy when she went out. Well, the reason she and a lot of Italians have stopped eating meat and cheese has to do with the continuous garbage strikes in Naples. A few months back, the mafia-controlled garbage industry refused again (this has been going on for more than a decade) to pick up the region’s trash, including toxic waste, so people started burning the trash and dumping illegally. This, of course, has severely polluted the environment and now high levels of dioxin have turned up in the cheese. How gross is that? You’re basically eating toxic garbage.

It seemed incredible to me that my classmate’s toxic buffalo cheese can be bought and sold without any warning on the packages. I asked my teacher why the government hasn’t stepped in and she said it all has to do with the mafia. At least the international community is finally getting involved. Japan slapped a ban on the cheese.

So do what the Italians do and seek out organic labels when buying buffalo mozzarella. Or stick to cow’s milk. Or try to purchase it from farming areas not doubling as poisonous landfills. 

Sarah Mikutel