Traditional cheeses, with protected names (PDO/PGI) are sold at a premium and hence can be susceptible to substitution and fraud. This review reports the available authentication methods, either chemical, physical, or DNA-based methods, currently used for origin authentication, highlighting their principle, reported application to cheese geographical origin authentication, performance, and respective advantages and limits. Isotope and elemental fingerprinting showed consistent accuracy in origin authentication. Other chemical and physical methods, such as near-infrared spectroscopy and NMR, require more studies and larger sampling to assess their discriminative power. Emerging DNA-based methods, such as metabarcoding, showed good potential for origin authentication. However, metagenomics, providing a more in-depth view of the cheese microbiota (up to the strain level) is an interesting approach to authenticate the origin of cheeses, but is still in its early development.
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