Travelling with cheese and coffee

Having returned from a long-overdue trip to my home country of the USA, I feel I have eaten a lot of cheese over the last two weeks. Which is a good thing, really. It was an enjoyable trip and lovely to see familiar faces after a four-year gap. We went from Florida to Philadelphia to New York, and seemed to bring the sun along with us.

I was reintroduced to Kraft’s Velveeta and other processed slices, as well as feta, cream cheese, and bit of Swiss cheese, which is what they call Emmental over there. The diversity of the American cheese market has increased over the past decade or so, and it’s nice to see cheese shops multiplying and people discussing goat cheese there.

I will also note that the quality of coffee has also improved remarkably. At one shop we had to stay while the barista crafted us a macchiato (versus takeout). It was well worth the extra time spent awaiting the results.

Overall, according to Statistica (, the US ranks second in manufacturing cheese, with 6.2 million metric tons made in 2021, after the European Union, which produced over 10 million tons in the same year. Domestic cheese consumption has grown, with the average American eating 40.2 pounds of cheese in 2020, which has increased by over five pounds in the last decade, M. Shahbandeh of Statistica reports.

Kraft Singles continue to account for a lot of cheese eating in the US, which was my experience too. Around 108.7 million consumers reported eating these ubiquitous slices in a week in 2020. Boar’s Head, a deli counter favourite, saw 14.03 million consumers enjoy its wares during the same time period. Another interesting feature is how much Velveeta and Kraft products dominate the consumption area, as Kraft also sells deli-type American cheeses for supermarket counters.

Meanwhile, the US Dairy Export Council reports that US dairy exports have grown to 17 per cent of its production, with cheese being a strong export, which helped to offset declines in other sectors such as SMP and whey powder. Indeed, the February numbers showed that cheese grew by 9.2 per cent to 2,777 million tons over the previous February for cheese, and this set a US export record for that segment. Most of that increased demand came from cheddar sales, the US DEC reports. It also reports that the US has gained share against New Zealand and the EU.

It proves there is nothing more universal than the love of cheese.

Related content

Leave a reply

Dairy Industries International