After World War II, American GIs returned home with a taste for a delicious new food they had discovered in Italy – pizza. Today, thanks in large part to these soldiers, Mozzarella rates second only to Cheddar in popularity in the United States. Wisconsin cheesemakers produce close to 650 million pounds of this Pasta Filata cheese each year. Pasta Filata refers to the process in which the curds are dipped in hot water and then stretched and kneaded into parallel strands. This allows Mozzarella to melt and flow and gives it its characteristic stretch. Whole milk Mozzarella is richer in taste and has excellent melting properties. Part-skim Mozzarella browns faster. String cheese is similar to Mozzarella, but is formed into strips for snacking.