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New Reduced Fat cheeses offer full cheese flavor with less fat and fewer calories

PLYMOUTH, Wis. (April 7, 2008)
Sargento Foods Inc. announces the addition of three new varieties to their award-winning reduced fat cheeses. The Sargento Reduced Fat line enables health-conscious consumers to indulge their passion for cheese, without having to sacrifice taste. The three new varieties. Medium Cheddar slices. Sharp Cheddar snack sticks and Colby-Jack slices and snack sticks are worthy substitutes for regular natural cheese in both cooking and snacking. Along with the new varieties. Reduced Fat 4 Cheese Italian shreds will see increased distribution due to popular demand.

Cheeses from the line contain fewer calories and 1/3 less fat than other natural cheeses, helping consumers meet their Food and Drug Administration-recommended dietary inclusion of 3 cups low-fat or fat-free milk - or an equivalent amount of low-fat cheese - each day. Developing flavor in cheese is an art and Sargento cheesemakers go to great measures to create the fullest flavor reduced fat cheese.

Top nutrition experts are chiming in on the line's role in a healthy lifestyle. "Consumers are always looking for ways to eat healthier and slim down, and that can be as simple as making some small changes in your diet," says Chery Forberg, RD, author of the new book Positively Ageless: A 28-Day Plan for a Younger, Slimmer, Sexier You, and Nutritionist to the NBC's fitness reality show "The Biggest Loser." "Substituting flavorful low-fat cheese for regular cheese is the perfect example. Because they are lower in fat and calories, reduced fat cheeses can be enjoyed as a snack or combined with veggies, whole grains and lean proteins to create a nutritious, well-balanced meal."

The Reduced Fat line was created with the needs of today's consumer in mind. "We know consumers are looking for ways to cut calories and fat from their diets, while still being able to cook and enjoy the same foods they know and love," said Chris Groom, Senior Marketing Manager for Sargento. "These cheeses fulfill that desire by providing natural reduced fat, reduced calorie alternatives that taste delicious whether incorporated into recipes or on their own."

The new Reduced Fat cheeses will be on grocery store shelves nationwide in May.

Nutrition Tips from Cheryl Forberg, RD
• When trying to follow a weight loss plan, it's important to plan ahead: your meals, your snacks and your exercise. It doesn't have to be complicated - a piece of fruit and a reduced fat cheese stick is a quick, portable snack.

• Don't skip meals - and that includes breakfast. Skipping meals leads to overeating and the wrong food choices. Start your day with a warm meal of complex carbohydrates and lean protein, such as a breakfast sandwich on a whole grain muffin with fresh berries and a glass of milk.

• Fiber up your sandwich with lots of fresh veggies, and switch to whole grain bread. Adding tomato, lettuce, onion or shredded carrot can easily add five or more grams of fiber to your meal. Topping it off with a slice of reduced fat cheese will deliver 15% of your daily requirement of calcium.

• Snacks are just as important as your meals. Schedule them and be sure they include some protein. Reduced fat cheese sticks are a perfect grab-and-go option.

• Losing weight doesn't mean saying goodbye to cheese. If you're a real cheese lover, stock up on reduced fat cheese sticks. They'll give you the flavor and texture you love with a fraction of the fat.

• Whole grain or corn tortillas have more fiber and less fat than traditional white tortillas.

• Have salad fixings available at all times: lettuce, tomatoes, lean cold cuts and reduced fat cheese. If you only have healthy options available, you can't make bad choices.

• Next time you're feeling wiped out in the late afternoon, forget about coffee and cookies and have a half sandwich with whole grain bread, lean turkey and reduced fat cheese instead. This combo of protein, carbohydrates and fat provides a sense of fullness, as well as a brain and body boost.

• Most of us simply do not eat enough vegetables - aim for at least five servings a day, and try different toppings to find the combos that appeal to your family. Even the most finicky eater will have trouble resisting broccoli when it's topped with melted reduced fat cheese.

For reduced fat cheese recipe ideas, please visit

Sargento Foods Inc. has demonstrated its passion for cheese throughout its history. Founded in 1953 in Plymouth, Sargento is a leading manufacturer, packager and marketer of natural shredded, sliced and snack cheeses, cheese appetizers, ingredients and sauces. Sargento is owned and operated by the Gentine family, and has net sales in excess of $650 million.



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