Its color, a pale orange, was eye-catching. The cheese, distributed by a federal program during a time of volatile milk production in the s recession, is iconic to this day, forming fraught memories among those who had to eat it and those who never got a taste. The cheesy story all started in , when the Agricultural Act of gave the Commodity Credit Corporation, a government-owned corporation dedicated to stabilizing farm incomes, the authority to purchase dairy products like cheese from farmers. During the s, as Americans sat in long gas lines and watched the economy tank, they faced another crisis: an unprecedented shortage of dairy products.
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Government cheese is processed cheese provided to welfare beneficiaries, Food Stamp recipients, and the elderly receiving Social Security in the United States , as well as to food banks. This processed cheese was used in military kitchens during World War II and has been used in schools since the s. Government cheese is a commodity cheese that was controlled by the US federal government from World War II to the early s. Government cheese was created to maintain the price of dairy when dairy industry subsidies artificially increased the supply of milk and created a surplus of milk that was then converted into cheese, butter, or powdered milk. The cheese, along with the butter and dehydrated powder, was stored in over warehouses across 35 states. The cheese was bought and stored by the government's Commodity Credit Corporation. According to the government, it "slices and melts well. The cheese was often from food surpluses stockpiled by the government as part of milk price supports.
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Most people under the age 50 will not recall what was once known in the Black community as government cheese. Also distributed were items such as powdered milk, butter, long shelf life canned food and a few staples. If Trump has his way, America may soon see a return to the days of government cheese.
Government cheese is processed cheese that was provided to welfare and food stamp recipients in the United States during the s and early s. The style of cheese predated the era, having been used in military kitchens since the Second World War and in schools since as early as the s. The cheese was bought and stored by the government's Commodity Credit Corporation. According to the government, it "slices and melts well. Like all American processed cheese, it consists of a variety of cheese types and other ingredients such as emulsifiers blended together, and may be made of any of Cheddar cheese, Colby cheese, cheese curd, or granular cheese.