A Soap Opera Insulted Italian Cheese and Isn't Getting Away With It

By Aly Walansky |
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We love our daytime soaps for their over the top drama and intrigue, but the spectacle gets a lot more real apparently when Italian cheese gets involved.

The Grana Padano Consortium of Italy is suing The Bold and the Beautiful – America’s longest-running soap opera – because a character on the show claimed that Grana Padano was just not as good a cheese as Parmigiano Reggiano.

People have a right to have different tastes and opinions, and soap opera characters are people too.

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The root of the drama was planted last year when a character named Charlie was cooking a meal and realized he had picked up Grana Padano rather than Parmigiano Reggiano. He is so disappointed, he decides to just abandon cooking the meal and go back out for what he considers the superior cheese. It’s not exactly “your evil twin is back from the dead and planning a hostile takeover of your advertising firm” level plot twist, but hey, points for specificity.

“The problem is that Grana Padano, much like The Bold and the Beautiful, is a global product and the negative message could easily have reached hundreds of millions of people,” Stafano Berni, the director of the Grana Padano consortium told The Local.

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The US is currently the world’s second biggest market for Grana Padano (after Germany, where B&B is also broadcast), and the daytime soap is seen in over100 countries, reaching 300-500 million viewers every day. It’s fair to say they have global influence, and that influence may include cheese decisions.

Grana Padano is currently seeking legal counsel and trying to quantify the commercial loss they claim could come from “negative messaging” that may have reached as many as 500 million viewers worldwide. Will the lawsuit prove successful? Will the cheese market crater? Will Hope be exposed as the puppet master pulling strings the Grana Padano Consortium this whole time? Stay tuned.

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