As the nation's desire for cheese varieties expands, more artisanal cheesemakers are popping up, creating fanciful cheeses such as French and Tuscan herbed curd. Cheese consumption in the U.S. has increased from 11 pounds to 31 pounds per person between 1970 and 2004, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
About two dozen dairies have moved near the New Mexico cities of Clovis and Portales to supply milk to a cheese plant. The plant will consume 7 million gallons of milk each day. "We are at a point now in Roosevelt and Curry County were we've just about reached the saturation point. We can handle maybe one or two more [dairies] and that will be it," said Walter Bradley, director of government and industry relations for the Southwest Area of Dairy Farmers of America.
Some scientists increasingly see the consumption of sugary beverages as an overlooked contributor to rising rates of obesity, but other researchers and industry groups contend it's a stretch to say there's a clear cause and effect relationship at play. In addition to sodas, one nutritionist says defining milk is getting tough these days because of such a variety of flavors and sweetened liquid yogurts.