I am a bit of a cheese aficionado, and so the other day as I was having some Gouda and water biscuits, I questioned something:
Why do some cheese come covered in Wax?
The answer is much simpler than I thought. While the colour of the wax has some unofficial meanings as to the age of the cheese, the wax really is there for one main reason.
Most 'older' cheeses, when made many centuries ago, were made in processes that built up a 'rind' on the cheese. However, as cheese making techniques improved, new strains of cheese were created that lacked this protective rind -- a rind that is used to preserve the cheese.
So, in an attempt to emulate this rind, cheese makers decided on artificial wax 'rinds'. It is more akin to sealing wax versus candle wax, and is required to be non-toxic.