“Got Milk?” is arguably the dairy industry’s best ad slogan ever. But how about “Got Cheese?” That do anything for you? Americans are eating record amounts of cheese — 35 pounds of it per person each year on average. But diary farmers still have plenty left over, and there’s a huge surplus of the base product, milk, too. Enter Dairy Management Incorporated (DMI), a quasi-government trade group whose mission is to find a use for all that extra milk, cheese and butter. Their answer? Fast food chains like Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, McDonald’s, Burger King and Domino’s. DMI is placing food scientists at these chains to create cheese-based dishes, and it’s working. From Pizza Hut’s cheese-stuffed crust to Taco Bell’s Quesalupa, fast food menus are filling up with cheesy items. Clint Rainey wrote about the story for Bloomberg Businessweek and Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal talked to him to get all the delicious details.
Click the audio player above to hear the full story.