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15 Stinkingly Fun & Interesting Cheese Facts

Cheese! Oh cheese! There are lots of stinky cheeses in the world, and almost as many wonderful and interesting facts about them! How many of these do you already know?

Beano Facts Team
Last Updated:  October 19th 2022

From the stinkiest Stilton to the mildest Manchego there are a whole lot of whiffy ways to learn about the taste of cheese! But if you're unlucky enough not to have an enormous cheeseboard in front of you today, then this cheesy set of fun facts might be your best bet! Why not see how many of these you already knew?!

1. Cheese can be made from Hippopotamus milk!

Cheese can be made from almost any milk, so long as it’s got a thing in it called lactic acid! Usually people make cheese with cow’s or goat’s milk - but the really adventurous cheese lovers out there could go wild with it!

2. Cheese, in moderation, can be really good for you!

Cheese contains lots of zinc and vitamins which are good for the body! Zinc is very good for keeping your eyes healthy but remember, as with all things, too much of a good thing can be bad! Cheese is quite fatty after all!

3. Humans have been making cheese for 10000 years!

Ever since the earliest sheep were used by humans for their milk, our ancestors worked out to make cheese! It probably wasn’t as nice as the cheese we get now, but talk about aged!

4. There are well over 1000 types of cheese!

That’s a lot of cheese, and to the untrained mouth, most of them taste very similar! But every country in the world has their own type of cheese and like most dishes, they’re very proud of them! What is your favourite cheese?

5. The world’s oldest cheese is 3200 years old!

This ancient cheese was found in an Egyptian tomb! It was probably put there for whoever was in the tomb to snack on in the afterlife - admittedly it only survives as some whitish goop in a jar, but scientists have confirmed that it is undeniably CHEESE!

6. Cheese stinks because of the protein, fat and sugar in it!

When a cheese is made, it starts to rot down, which while being very stinky, also makes it super delicious! As the protein, fat and sugar in milk break down, bacteria is put into the cheese which makes it even smellier!

7. Epoisse de Bourgogne is the stinkiest cheese in the world!

This particular cheese is so smelly that in France it is not allowed on public transport! Imagine that, a cheese so stinky you can’t even take it on the bus!? But even though it’s so smelly, people all around the world love it! Have you tried this stinky cheese?

8. A huge wheel of Cheddar cheese was given to Queen Victoria as a wedding present!

This enormous cheese weighed 450kg, that’s heavier than a horse! It was given as a present to the Queen so if it was any smaller she might have been offended - it definitely would have been very impressive! Who wants a diamond necklace when you could have a big cheese!? Do you think she managed to eat the whole thing?

9. Cheese can help you sleep!

Lots of people think that eating stinky cheese before bed can give you strange dreams - but some cheese-mad scientists did a study in 2005 and found that it can actually help you get to sleep. There is a chemical in cheese called tryptophan, and they think this helps you doze off - it’s definitely worth a try!

10. Cheese in French is Fromage!

This word is pronounced ‘fro-marj’ - so if you’re ever in France and you’re on the hunt for some deliciously stinky cheeses, this is what you should ask for! Luckily in France you’re never more than 2 metres away from a cheese shop (ok, that isn’t true!)

11. The fancy word for someone who loves cheese is a Turophile!

It’s not a very well known word so you can definitely show off with this one! A true Turophile can name lots of cheeses, and as we know, there are lots and lots of them! Do you think you know any Turophiles?

12. There is a bank in Italy that accepts cheese!

The Credem bank accepts cheese from cheese makers in exchange for loans! They even keep the cheese in a special stinky vault! The bank holds almost $200 million worth of cheese! Incredible!

13. Cheese can be used to create electricity!

In the town of Albertville in France, the cheese making process creates gas, which is then burnt by a small local power station to create energy for the locals! Talk about clever, and of course stinky!

14. Cheese can be made using bacteria from feet!

If you thought feet were stinky, imagine the cheese that comes from them! Scientists in America took bacteria from people’s feet, and then let it grow in cheese to create unique cheese from it! Sounds pretty disgusting, but would you eat it?

15. Edam Cheese never goes off!

This famous cheese only gets hard when it gets old, which meant that in history people like sailors would take it on long voyages! It’s definitely better than starving in our opinion! But would you eat a rock-hard cheese?