Real or Fake Food?

February 22, 2009
By

Here’s another good reason why you should know where your food is coming from.  This article from USA Today:  Something Fishy?  Counterfeit foods enter the U.S. market.

Some of your favorite foods may be fakes.  Foods masquerading as something else — a more nutritious something else — have been big news in the past two years. Chinese food companies in particular have been blamed for making deadly alterations to dairy, baby and pet foods by adding melamine. The chemical makes it appear that the food or beverage has the required level of protein.
But what about food producers in this country? What fraudulent foods do U.S. consumers have to fear from American companies?
It goes on to explain how your olive oil isn’t really olive oil and your honey isn’t really 100% real honey.  This doesn’t surprise me.  I could never understand how a loaf of bread could contain 29 ingredients including words that were unpronounceable in the English language.  I mean, really, how hard is it? 
In a local based economy, it’s not difficult.  In a market where bread is shipped 1,000 miles to the grocery store to sit on the shelf for 3 weeks…some kind of unknown chemicals have to be added to keep it from spoiling.  Big corporate food companies aren’t concerned about wholesome ingredients…it’s about profits.  It shouldn’t shock us that they cut corners. 
Intermixed with real food, the store is full of fake food.  Fake butter, fake milk, fake cheese, fake sour cream, fake sugar, fake meat, fake extracts.  Companies are now advertising the fact that they do indeed use real food.  Why doesn’t it bother us when we see a package advertising “REAL CHEESE!” –as if fake cheese should ever be an option.   
I think I’ll go look at my gardening catalog and finish planning a real food garden.