“Parmigiano Reggiano" is naturally lactose-free. The absence of lactose is a natural consequence of the typical process of obtaining Parmigiano Reggiano. Contains galactose in quantities less than 0.01g / 100g ".
This is the wording that can be put on the label on the packages of Parmigiano lactic acid in the first two days of production.
In fact, in June 2016, the Ministry of Health issued a circular (No. 24708) in which it authorizes the use of a specific wording to claim the natural absence of lactose in dairy products. And it is the same Ministry that has therefore defined a wording applicable to cheeses with a lactose content of less than 0.1g / 100g.
There are natural microbiological conditions for which lactose is absent in Parmigiano Reggiano, from the very first days. Lactose is a sugar, normally found in milk. In the production process of Parmigiano Reggiano, lactose is fermented by the microflora of lactic bacteria in the first 48 hours following processing. This is the so-called lactic fermentation, during which lactic bacteria, which are naturally found in milk, then transform the lactose sugar into.
Scientific research also confirms these claims.
- The research carried out by the Consortium on the trend of glycolysis shows that 0.004g / 100g of lactose are detected in the form 48 hours after processing (Pecorari et al, 2003) (Note 1)
- Studies carried out by Giovanni Valentino Coppa of the Polytechnic University of Marche, with a more sensitive method of analysis, have also shown that Parmigiano Reggiano is a lactose-free product to which a growing number of people have intolerances, even particularly serious ones. From the analyzes carried out by Prof. Coppa on various samples of Parmigiano Reggiano - analyzed in different stages of maturation, ie from 1 to 36 months - it emerges that the lactose content is over a hundred times lower found by Pecorari and others. (Note 2 and 3)
- In addition, the Consortium periodically analyzes random samples of Parmigiano Reggiano for the lactose content. The collection of samples takes place both during the expertization operations (on cheese from 9 months of maturation onwards) and by purchasing Parmigiano Reggiano directly from the market (therefore maturing over 12 months).
In all the samples analyzed by the Consortium, the lactose value was always lower than the detection limit of the method (LOD = 0.01g / 100g), confirming the above-mentioned studies several times and confirming that aging does not affect the lactose content. present in Parmigiano Reggiano.
The Consortium has also created the “100% natural” graphic symbol that can be used on Parmigiano Reggiano wrappers destined for the Italian market to remind consumers that Parmigiano Reggiano, in addition to being naturally lactose-free, is also free of preservatives.