Sunday morning rant ...

Talk about things that are not necessarily related to music or the guitar.
simonm
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Sunday morning rant ...

Post by simonm » Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:42 am

I admit it. I read packages.

(rant)
I like candied ginger. I got some "organic" "candied ginger cubes" yesterday from a well known German organic supplier called Alnatura. They have their own shops and also supply wholesale to others. The have a big wood cladded "Eco" warehouse about 40 km from here.

While eating a few of the "ginger cubes" yesterday, I was kind of surprised how evenly-sized they were and how textureless they were and read the package (I had failed to do so before buying). The composition was 79g sugar per 100g and just 4g fibre. The company is selling ginger flavored sugar sweets and calling them candied ginger*. Very cheeky. Made in China, certified organic by Austria. Not a way to enhance your premium brand reputation. The contact box on their website asks for your life history (exaggeration) if you want to make a complaint, marginally less for a comment

(/rant)



Obervation:

Out of curiosity I was reading the labels on various packs of prepackaged organic (bio) ham and turkey at a local organic/bio supermarket. There was some ham which seemed to contain only ham (somewhat more expensive) with a minimum of additives as I would expect. However, one brand (somewhat cheaper) had 6 chemicals (nitrates and the like) and sugar while the Turkey also contained beetroot juice. (colouring). All the smoked salmon listed sugar. Perhaps this is normal in smoked salmon but it surprised me. I know that farmed salmon has long been fed varying amounts of carrot extract (beta carotene) to control the flesh colour depending on the market it is destined for. The more carrot extract, the redder the flesh.

Another Observation:
One "bio"/Organic store (a chain) seems to have repositioned from basic foodstuffs to mainly prepared meals and convenience foods over the last few years. It is increasingly hard to find "ingredients" there rather than fashionable "industrial vegan" products. (e.g. oatmeal as opposed to "muesli base!" with amaranth and chia and cornflakes added). I suppose it is a reflection of the fact that "bio" is a major industry in Germany with the Dr Oetker company being the biggest supplier as far as I am aware. Oh for farm shops and farmers markets.

Now, off to fill up my coffee ...

PeteJ
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by PeteJ » Sun Jul 02, 2017 12:23 pm

Real food is becoming ever more difficult to find. Got to 'add value' to max the profits.

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pogmoor
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by pogmoor » Sun Jul 02, 2017 6:07 pm

Well sugar is organic - what are you complaining about :lol:
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wchymeus
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by wchymeus » Sun Jul 02, 2017 8:06 pm

pogmoor wrote:
Sun Jul 02, 2017 6:07 pm
Well sugar is organic - what are you complaining about :lol:
Not even sure...

I was picky about salmon and always wanted wild salmon to avoid exactly what you say... but then found out that wild salmon is eating plastic, pretty much what all wild fishes do nowadays... So now I eat farmed fish as they get filtered water :shock:

I visited my aunt not too long ago and was drooling with the idea that I'd get some of her tomatoes, salads and other veggies from her garden... As I got there she told me that was worried about her plants, veggies, fruits: her garden is next to a farmer field who is now spraying a lot of toxic stuff ... nothing organic anymore :shock: :shock:
Field 2014, Oberg 2013, Vincente Sachis Badia 1977

kervoas
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by kervoas » Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:00 pm

Eating some cheese today I noticed an allergy warning on the wrapping 'contains MILK'. Doh!
Then an avocado with the advice 'wash before use'. First, I don't normally eat the skin, second, I'm not going to 'use' an avocado.
Grrrr.
“The only escapes from the miseries of life are music and cats”
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wchymeus
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by wchymeus » Mon Jul 03, 2017 5:10 am

kervoas wrote:
Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:00 pm
Eating some cheese today I noticed an allergy warning on the wrapping 'contains MILK'. Doh!
Then an avocado with the advice 'wash before use'. First, I don't normally eat the skin, second, I'm not going to 'use' an avocado.
Grrrr.
:lol:
Field 2014, Oberg 2013, Vincente Sachis Badia 1977

Cass Couvelas
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by Cass Couvelas » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:06 pm

kervoas wrote:
Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:00 pm
Then an avocado with the advice 'wash before use'. First, I don't normally eat the skin, second, I'm not going to 'use' an avocado.
Grrrr.
Avocados are a now a health hazard, it seems. People injure themselves trying to extract the stone. The British Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons wants safety-warning labels placed on avocados. “There is minimal understanding of how to handle them,” the honorary secretary of Bapras, Simon Eccles, told the Times. “Perhaps we could have a cartoon picture of an avocado with a knife, and a big red cross going through it?”
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simonm
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by simonm » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:43 pm

wchymeus wrote:
Sun Jul 02, 2017 8:06 pm
...
I was picky about salmon and always wanted wild salmon to avoid exactly what you say... but then found out that wild salmon is eating plastic, pretty much what all wild fishes do nowadays... So now I eat farmed fish as they get filtered water :shock:

The only salmon fish farms I have ever seen (on European coasts) are essentially cages in the sea, usually in estuaries. So they get the same sea water as wild salmon plus an extra dose of whatever pollution washes down the river into the estuary.

wchymeus
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by wchymeus » Mon Jul 03, 2017 7:02 pm

simonm wrote:
Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:43 pm
wchymeus wrote:
Sun Jul 02, 2017 8:06 pm
...
I was picky about salmon and always wanted wild salmon to avoid exactly what you say... but then found out that wild salmon is eating plastic, pretty much what all wild fishes do nowadays... So now I eat farmed fish as they get filtered water :shock:

The only salmon fish farms I have ever seen (on European coasts) are essentially cages in the sea, usually in estuaries. So they get the same sea water as wild salmon plus an extra dose of whatever pollution washes down the river into the estuary.

Ok ok in the States? I am so naive... I saw a trout farm and thought salmons were in the same type of basins...
Anyhow... decided, I'll stop eating salmon from now on. Trouts ok :mrgreen:
Field 2014, Oberg 2013, Vincente Sachis Badia 1977

meouzer
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by meouzer » Tue Jul 04, 2017 2:29 am

wchymeus wrote:
Sun Jul 02, 2017 8:06 pm
I was picky about salmon and always wanted wild salmon to avoid exactly what you say... but then found out that wild salmon is eating plastic, pretty much what all wild fishes do nowadays... So now I eat farmed fish as they get filtered water :shock:
I do the exact opposite for the same reason. I only buy wild caught Salmon because farmed Salmon is much higher in contaminants overall.
Farmed Salmon in effect is much higher in the food chain than wild.

P.S. At current rates, there will be more plastic in the ocean by weight than fish by the year 2050.

simonm
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by simonm » Tue Jul 04, 2017 2:01 pm

wchymeus wrote:
Mon Jul 03, 2017 7:02 pm

Ok ok in the States? I am so naive... I saw a trout farm and thought salmons were in the same type of basins...
Anyhow... decided, I'll stop eating salmon from now on. Trouts ok :mrgreen:

We have gone off on a bit of a side track here. :-)
I did an internet search on salmon farming. Here are two links. One critical, one more optimistic. Curiously the negative pages (lots) were higher up the rankings.

The bright view (low down the rankings): http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news ... uaculture/
Doomsday (or I suppose the authors would say "realistic") view: http://www.farmedanddangerous.org/salmo ... -problems/

The cages or nets from both are articles are pretty typical of what I have seen over the years. The rectangular frames in the more critical article are also a bit like the pontoons used for mussel farming but in that case they would have lots of ropes dangling from them. Next time you are on a boat of any kind, have a look at the shores of the estuary as you go along and you will likely see some fish farming. I really have no idea about what kinds of fish are farmed today.

There was a story years ago about a certain European country's smoked salmon. The curious feature was that the apparently exported (say) 5000 tons per year, where as they produced/imported only 3000 tons of salmon. However, they also imported some 6000 tons of "sea trout" which curiously are pretty much indistinguishable from salmon for many people especially when it is smoked.

As for fish, you might as well enjoy it while it lasts. The ocean equilibrium has been so bashed about over the last 50-100 years that even a complete halt to fishing and dumping would not bring it back to what it was during most of human history. Obviously, sooner or later it will reach new equilibrium but what that will look like is anyone's guess.




Back to the original topic.

The company who sells the candied ginger assured me that because it is candied ginger, 80% sugar is perfectly OK and the it has a good ginger flavor. The latter is quite true, it has a such a strong flavor that I wonder if it may have an unlisted flavor enhancer.

Yesterday, I read the ingredients on a packet of "organic turkey salami" - this boasted 79% turkey meat**. This was enhanced with palm oil and fructose among the more memorable ingredients.

I am going to the same spot later today. I wonder what interesting (pseudo-) food items I will see. :-)


**
p.s. back in the dim distant past and I doubt this has change much, some sausages from the British Isles contained so much "rusk" (bread) that they would be in danger of being labelled as "vegan" if sold now. (OK, a slight exaggeration …)

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Mark Clifton-Gaultier
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Re: Sunday morning rant ...

Post by Mark Clifton-Gaultier » Tue Jul 04, 2017 2:28 pm

You're all overlooking the fact (or perhaps we don't care?) that farmed salmon tastes like crap compared with its wild counterpart - no texture, no depth of flavour, no contest.

I will only buy the wild stuff - meanwhile I try to avoid foods that are packaged in plastic (ironically this includes the salmon); extremely difficult as most companies are only interested in making things easier for themselves. Recycling is not the answer as so much food packaging can't be reclaimed (in the UK). I have had to give up entirely on bought biscuits, potato chips etc. and I get strange looks, even agression or complaints, when I take my own containers to the supermarket. Independent shops are generally, but not always, more sympathetic.

I'm with you on the ginger Simonm - the phrase to look for might be "preserved ginger" - it appears that these terms have their legal meanings changed ever so quietly while we are not looking.

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