Tyrophagus putrescentiae is one of several mite species referred to as cheese mites. This species is common on plant leaves, stored grain and animal feed.
Mimolette cheese displaying the textured crust caused by the mites
Cheese mites are mites that are used to produce such cheeses as Milbenkäse, Cantal and Mimolette. The action of the living mites on the surface of these cheeses contributes to the flavor and gives them a distinctive appearance. A 2010 SEM study found that Milbenkäse cheese was produced using Tyrophagus casei mites, while Mimolette cheese used Acarus siro mites (also known as flour mites).
^Melnyk, J.P.; Smith, A.; Scott-Dupree, C.; Marcone, M.F.; Hill, A. (August 2010). "Identification of cheese mite species inoculated on Mimolette and Milbenkase cheese through cryogenic scanning electron microscopy". Journal of Dairy Science. 93 (8): 3461–3468. doi:10.3168/jds.2009-2937. PMID20655414.