Feast Your Eyes: Kraft's Massive Underground Cheese Cave Photo: Kraft's Massive Underground Cheese Cave in Springfield, Missouri
400,000 square feet of Velveeta, buried deep within the earth.
Deep under Springfield, Missouri , lies a cheese cave of industrial proportions, a 2-million-square-foot refrigerated warehouse called Springfield Underground . Since 2008 , Kraft Foods has rented 400,000 square feet of the repurposed limestone mine as a massive distribution center, from which to ship 680-pound, Velveeta-bright barrels of Oscar Meyer meats, Philadelphia cream cheese, Velveeta pasteurized processed cheeses, Jell-O, and Lunchables.
Unlike traditional cheese caves, which can impart the particular flavors of time and place—the unique combinations of bacteria, yeast, and mold that cheese makers call terroir — Wired magazine explains that in the case of Kraft's cave:
It’s not about aging, it’s about cheap storage: Moving refrigeration underground saves massive amounts of energy, since the temperature 100 feet down is a constant 58 degrees Fahrenheit. An above-ground pump sends 13,000 gallons of chilled brine through the system every day, keeping the warehouse at a cool 36 degrees.\n