Expats living in Merida may be in a dither regarding what appears to be an absence of cheddar cheese at Costco.  (There is some history to such shortages there, being the major source of gratifying a taste for this northern staple, as absence of supply has happened before — often resulting in panic buying when a delivery finally arrives.)   The two major brands of cheddar that they have carried in the past :  Cabot, and Tillamook, appear to be discontinued.  Instead we now have the ersatz product depicted above.  And it has been relocated in the store to a closed chiller case, away from the open cases where genuine cheddar used to be stocked.

This block of cheese does not deserve to be called cheddar.  It is flabby, greasy, and is neither toothsome nor crumbly.  It tastes like Monterrey Jack :  bland.   I doubt it has been aged  adequately – a requirement for true cheddar.  The term “sharp” (fuerte/strong) seems deceptive.  

There may be an economic basis for the current situation :  according to a recent segment from NPR, Trump’s tariff war has earned retaliation against US dairy products from the Mexican government, assessing a 25% tariff.  (¿And who can blame this on anyone but Trump, who started the conflict?)

But it would seem that instead of passing the increased cost along to customers, Costco has decided to cheapen the product with an inferior store-branded block that is barely recognizable as cheddar.  ¿ Can’t there be room for two price levels — one based on a high-quality cheddar such as Cabot or Tillamook, and the other on an economic imitation ?  Please bring back the good stuff, Costco!  (“The second mouse gets the cheese”.)