Parmesan takes the space test

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The Independent Online

NASA officials and their Russian counterparts are planning to visit central Italy this month to consider whether parmesan cheese could add vital calories and flavour to a space traveller's lunch box.

NASA officials and their Russian counterparts are planning to visit central Italy this month to consider whether parmesan cheese could add vital calories and flavour to a space traveller's lunch box.

The Rome daily Il Messaggero reports that scientists from Nasa and the Yuri Gagarin Centre will meet biologists from Milan and Parma, home of the cheese, and the World Health Organisation, which has been working on improving the diets of astronauts and cosmonauts.

The cheese has already passed the taste test with 15 cosmonauts, who have eaten 100g daily during ground training over the past four months. If the Americans can now be convinced, the next obstacle will be finding how best to package this high-energy food.

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