Strawberry Milk has No Strawberries, Cheese Product Has No Cheese
What are we doing here? Playing make-believe?
I always loved cooking, as early on as I can remember. If I wasn’t helping in the kitchen at age four, I was playing in my make-believe kitchen, as kids do, preparing make-believe anything! When you’re four, an empty plate can contain an imaginary anything, and it’s fair game.
But does this somehow now apply to what we as adults advertise, sell or buy?
Two cases in point, for reference: Nesquik Strawberry Milk and Kraft Cheese Product. Both are labeled as being something they do not have in the product.
Need proof? Here are their respective ingredient panels:
Nesquik Strawberry Milk Mix
SUGAR, ARTIFICIAL FLAVORS, CITRIC ACID, RED 40, SALT, BLUE 1. VITAMINS AND MINERALS: CALCIUM CARBONATE, ASCORBIC ACID (VITAMIN C), ZINC OXIDE, PYRIDOXINE HYDROCHLORIDE (VITAMIN B6), COPPER GLUCONATE, MANGANESE SULFATE, BIOTIN
Kraft Cheese Product
MILK, WHEY, MILK PROTEIN CONCENTRATE, MILKFAT, SODIUM CITRATE, CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF CALCIUM PHOSPHATE, WHEY PROTEIN CONCENTRATE, SALT, LACTIC ACID, SORBIC ACID AS A PRESERVATIVE, CHEESE CULTURE, ANNATTO AND PAPRIKA EXTRACT (COLOR), ENZYMES, VITAMIN D3. CONTAINS: MILK
Maybe I’m being presumptuous in thinking all of us would know something that was reminded to me in culinary school when I was being graded on a cake I’d baked (keep in mind, this was about four years prior to Paleo); my instructor, Chef Rosier scolded me for garnishing a vanilla butter cake with butter cream frosting with a strawberry.
Tsk, tsk, he said, one should never garnish with something that does not represent what’s inside the product. To this day, I do not know if that is a long standing culinary principle or just his own advice, but it made sense to me.
So what is it going to take for us to stop fooling ourselves? Are we still playing make-believe here?
At the very, very least, even if companies are choosing to deliver product that contributes so negatively to people’s diet and subsequent health with complete disregard, how about at least ‘fessing up to it?
Can we change the name from Strawberry Milk to ‘milk dyed red’? Not that it would help the root problem, but it would add a touch of honesty to it…