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What do the following have in common? Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta, Patagonian toothfish, prunes, and high fructose corn syrup? They didn’t sell, so they got renamed, remarketed, and became stars. Let’s just re-brand, and re-market an issue. Prunes don’t sell, so let’s call them dried plums and drop $10 million on an image makeover. Patagonian toothfish became Chilean sea bass and was so successful that it’s now on the “avoid” list on Seafood Watch.
So what’s next? The big bad guy of the food industry; high fructose corn syrup. Last week, the Corn Refiners Association petitioned the FDA to change the name to a much more innocuous sounding “corn sugar”. Makes you want to run right out and stock up, doesn’t it?
Please note, they’re doing it for you. That’s right, according to their Twitter page, “FDA petition was filed because independent research showed consumer confusion over high fructose corn syrup name.” Gee thanks.
No matter what it’s called, it’s not good for you, and it’s in just about every processed food, including ones labeled natural and organic. Michelle Simon makes a great point in her blog about this: “We need to stop obsessing over details like food labels, salt content, carbs, and grams of this fat vs. that fat. Instead, we need to talk about - and get the media to focus on - the importance of eating a whole foods, mostly plant-based, diet. One message scares Big Food more than any other; that people should be eating whole food that comes from nature and not from a factory. Industry really has no solution to offer, because their business model is based on processing nature, packaging it, and marking it up for high profits.”
If you need or want further proof, how about this: HGCS isn’t good for the environment. No matter what you call it, the amount of fertilizers needed to grow corn and the carbon footprint involved in processing it, are enormous. Michael Pollan takes a long look at this in the Omnivores Dilemma, and in a recent Justmeans post, they also bring up the fact that cane sugar is no environmental bargain either. Local, fresh, tasty and delicious; isn’t that better than spending time reading labels on packaged foods in the grocery store? Cooking with great ingredients is easy. Check out some of the recipes on my Web site if you’d like some ideas.
6:00pm - 9:00pm
MIST (at The Kalahari) 46 West 116th
Making Green From Green Event
Food Waste's Shocking Truths: Hunger, Business and YOU
Baruch Performing Arts Center (BPAC)
55 Lexington Ave. enter 25th St, betw Lex + 3rd
April 20-21, 2013
Location: Javits Center North, New York, NY
April 22, 2013