Sorry!! The article you are trying to read is not available now.
Thank you very much;
you're only a step away from
downloading your reports.

Read the Label: Faux Food, or Food Poisoning?

By

Fillers, bacteria available at your local grocer.

PrintPRINT
Add fake food to the usual run of inflated resumes, hair transplants and plastic-surgery-created beauty.

The phony grub in question isn't quite sawdust - but it substitutes cheap ingredients or techniques for the real thing, then sells it at a premium price. Call it a greedy (and illegal) ode to the bottom line.

The solution: Read the label, know your retailer - and beware.

Salmon is the easiest food to fake, Consumer Reports says.

The magazine tested 23 salmon fillets billed as "fresh caught" in 2005 and 2006 and found only 10 were wild salmon.

The difference: Wild salmon gets its distinctive color from the plankton they eat in the ocean while pen-raised salmon gets its hue from dye added to the food pellets they're fed. Cooked, wild salmon keeps its natural hue - but the color of the farm-raised fish often leaks out. It's almost enough to make you take up goldfish-swallowing.

Some Chinese food companies have been nabbed adding melamine to pet food to boost the level of protein. Just one problem: It's an organic compound often combined with formaldehyde to create melamine resin, a synthetic polymer that's fire-resistant and heat-tolerant. In 2007, vets blamed melamine for renal failure in cats and dogs, killing many.

Melamine was also found in wheat gluten exports and toothpaste.

USA Today reports that olive oil can be diluted with vegetable oil. There's no health risk, but you're not getting what you paid for.

Cane sugar or high-fructose corn syrup can be used to dilute honey, but the adulteration is easily detected. Smart crooks quickly moved on to beet sugar, which is harder to spot. Water can be added to maple syrup to increase volume.

But relax. If you want a dose of tradition, there's always the bacon double cheeseburger, an American icon that's cheap and therefore doesn't attract trickery.

Meanwhile, there's good, old-fashioned food poisoning to fret about.

The Food and Drug Administration has traced an outbreak of salmonella poisoning to a plant in Georgia owned by Peanut Corporation of America. General Mills (GIS), Kroger (KR) and Safeway (SWY) have joined food companies and retailers yanking items containing peanut butter and peanut paste. The outbreak has killed at least 6 people and sickened about 470 others in 43 states, causing widespread panic.

Now might be the time to paraphrase Homer Simpson: "Melamine and salmonella, ummmmmmm!"
< Previous
  • 1
Next >
No positions in stocks mentioned.
The information on this website solely reflects the analysis of or opinion about the performance of securities and financial markets by the writers whose articles appear on the site. The views expressed by the writers are not necessarily the views of Minyanville Media, Inc. or members of its management. Nothing contained on the website is intended to constitute a recommendation or advice addressed to an individual investor or category of investors to purchase, sell or hold any security, or to take any action with respect to the prospective movement of the securities markets or to solicit the purchase or sale of any security. Any investment decisions must be made by the reader either individually or in consultation with his or her investment professional. Minyanville writers and staff may trade or hold positions in securities that are discussed in articles appearing on the website. Writers of articles are required to disclose whether they have a position in any stock or fund discussed in an article, but are not permitted to disclose the size or direction of the position. Nothing on this website is intended to solicit business of any kind for a writer's business or fund. Minyanville management and staff as well as contributing writers will not respond to emails or other communications requesting investment advice.

Copyright 2011 Minyanville Media, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
PrintPRINT
 
Featured Videos

WHAT'S POPULAR IN THE VILLE