So I am visiting my parents for a bit... and they are ready to start eating organic - but (like me) are unwilling to waste the food they already have in their refrigerator and cabinets. This made total sense to me (and them) until lunch yesterday.
First let me start by saying I take buying organic food totally for granted. Where they live in upstate New York it is almost impossible to purchase all organic... whereas in my stores (any of them) you could buy what you wanted organically - right down to all your spices. It may be more expensive - but you at least have the option. Not so here. I have been to 3 grocery stores just to check what they have available and yikes! I had no idea how lucky I am!
Ok... back to the cheese. My dad asked, "What do you guys want for lunch? I could make some grilled cheese, I know the baby likes it." My mom replied, "Not if all we have is the plastic cheese..." So I went to the fridge and found this:
A few things struck me about the front:
1. "100% Farmer Owned" - what's the other option? Government owned? Cattle owned?
2. "100% of our Proceeds go to American Dairy Farmers" - PHEW! I was so worried some of this $$ might go to cancer research or something!
3. "Pasteurized Processed Cheese Product" - really the only part there that worries me is "product" - it makes me think it isn't cheese...
4. "Triple the Calcium!" - Hey I love strong bones that don't break... but how
are they jamming calcium into their cows... or cheese? Where does it come from? How does it get in there?
After checking out the cover - we were all in hysterics (mostly about the proceeds going to dairy farmers) - and then we turned it over to the ingredients. First we wrote down the things we thought should be in cheese.
I wrote "milk."
My dad wrote "milk, preservatives, salt, and food coloring" (he really wanted to make the grilled cheese).
My mom wrote "milk, whey, and salt."
After thorough analysis of the ingredients (looking up all the ones we didn't know on Google) here is what we found...
Milk (fine... except all the hormones and rBGH found in non-organic milk)
Whey (same as above)
Skim milk (same)
Milk protein concentrate (same)
At this point I was thinking lunch was still grilled cheese... all these things I have heard of!
Calcium phosphate (this is a calcium supplement)
Whey protein concentrate (same milk concerns as above)
Sodium citrate (a salt/acid, used for flavor, makes things tart... also a drug used to treat kidney problems... with some interesting side effects)
Salt (everyone in my family has high blood pressure... the more salt the better!!)
Sodium phosphate (what's that? more salt! mmmm, it adds texture, also used as a medication - you drink it before a colonoscopy)
Sorbic acid (prevents the growth of mold... I hope there's not a lot of it in there though... here is how it is treated in the lab)
Citric acid (used for flavor, it's the same as sodium citrate... so more salt!)
Color added (doesn't this just cover a whole host of things?! If you haven't checked out the Southampton Study on the links on the right of the page... check out this article on it)
Vitamin D3 (in case you don't take your vitamins)
Enzymes (really? which ones?)
Cheese Cultures (oh good, glad it's in there, even if it's the last ingredient!)
Then in bold: CONTAINS MILK (phew!)
If you're interested... we opted for leftovers and threw the cheese out.
Shared at: Frugally Sustainable